Since the 2007 model year, the Jeep Patriot has been one of the top budget-friendly off-road options. It may not hold this title long, with the introduction of the all-new Jeep Renegade. Can the hip and modern Renegade capture the illusive market of millennials or will the classic Patriot reign supreme? Find out which one comes out on top in today’s vehicle matchup as we compare the Jeep Renegade vs Jeep Patriot.
Jeep Renegade (base)
Engine: Turbocharged 1.4L 4-cylinder
Fuel Economy: 24 City / 31 Hwy
MSRP: From $17,995
2015 Jeep Renegade
Making its US debut, the 2015 Jeep Renegade is an interesting blend of cute and tough. The Renegade is characterized by a small, somewhat boxy design. It has large circular headlights, and square taillights with a unique “X” design inside. Despite its unique exterior design approach, the 2015 Renegade still looks like it belongs in the Jeep family, especially when looking at the front grill.
Inside, the Renegade feels like a tough, durable version of a subcompact car. Aside from Jeep logos, the inside doesn’t necessarily feel like other Jeeps. The cockpit is characterized by a circular theme. The knobs are large and circular, and virtually every design line is rounded in some way. It’s a practical design resulting in simple function control.
Front seats will be comfortable for most adults, but rear seats won’t suffice for tall adults. The back seats can fold down to create around 51 cubic feet of cargo space, but with the back seats up the storage space is fairly limited. To supplement this lack of space, a height-adjustable/removable cargo floor comes standard.
The majority of Renegade owners will not be driving off road, so Jeep focused on making the Renegade city-friendly. The base turbocharged 1.4L 4-cylinder engine will produce a quiet, comfortable city ride. For a small vehicle at this price point, the interior noise is quite minimal. It handles well, has a tight turning radius, and produces adequate speed for most city driving. There is a 2.4L engine option, producing 180 hp for those wanting an extra kick of power. AWD is optional with both engine choices. The top of the line Trailhawk trim is the best choice for off road use, with extra ground clearance, skid plates, Rock mode, and more.
For such a small vehicle, the fuel economy of the Renegade is unimpressive. Achieving 31 hwy mpg and 24 city mpg, it’s comparable to small and mid-size SUVs. Adding AWD will increase vehicle weight and decrease fuel economy even more.
The 2015 Jeep Renegade has not yet been crash tested. Although small vehicles tend to be more vulnerable in crashes, the Renegade comes with a healthy set of safety features. Seven airbags come standard, and backup camera is standard in all trims other than the Sport trim. Forward collision warning, automatic braking, lane departure warning and correction, rear cross traffic alert, and blind-spot monitoring are all optional. To learn more about safety features like these, check out the Top 5 Car Safety Features Available in 2015.
Base Renegades come with 3.5-inch color display, 12V power outlets, removable cargo floor, and more. Optional features are incredibly deep. Premium seating, Uconnect infotainment, 5-inch touch screen, MySky sunroof, WiFi hotspot, voice command, a variety of off-road features, and much more are available at an extra cost.
Jeep Patriot Overview (base)
Engine: 2.0L 4-cylinder
Fuel Economy: 23 City / 30 Hwy
2015 Jeep Patriot Review
A more traditional Jeep design, the 2015 Jeep Patriot is a more rugged looking option on the outside. It still looks similar to Patriots from nearly 10 years ago, but it by no means feels outdated thanks to subtle, modern design cues. The Patriot has been designed for traditionalists. It’s a masculine, Jeep-like, and off-road ready presentation.
The inside of the Patriot looks sturdy, clean, and standard. Jeep designed the interior of this vehicle for functionality rather than beauty. Large round knobs, standard Jeep steering wheel, and circular theme characterize the cockpit.
Passenger space for 4 is readily available in the Patriot. The tall design creates a decent amount of storage space as well. Back seats fold forward to create additional space for the largest items you may be hauling. There is 23 cubic ft of space behind the back seats, and 53.5 cubic feet when the rear seats are folded.
The Patriot offers front wheel drive and two 4×4 systems, Freedom Drive I and II. Freedom Drive I is equipped for standard off-road conditions, while Freedom Drive II is equipped for serious off-road conditions. Despite these capabilities for the trail, the Patriot is great for daily commuting, with great handling and maneuverability. The biggest downfall of the Patriot is interior noise, which is most noticeable at highway speeds.
The Patriot has improved fuel economy from previous years, but it is slightly below average in its class. The numbers drop significantly with the addition of a Freedom Drive package.
The NHTSA gave the 2015 Jeep Patriot a 4-star overall crash test rating. Primary areas of concern in this vehicle are slightly below average rollover ratings and frontal crash test results. Despite this, the Patriot has a good set of safety features and excellent outward visibility. Standard safety features include electronic stability control with roll mitigation, side-curtain airbags, and front side airbags.
Every 2015 Jeep Patriot comes with rear-seat heat vents, roof rails, illuminated cup holders, auxiliary jack, fog lamps, and more. It’s worth noting, the budget-priced Patriot does not include standard air conditioning. Available upgrade options are quite extensive. Blacked out wheels, universal garage-door opener, tailgate speakers, Garmin navigation, keyless entry, heated mirrors, Sirius Travel Link, and much more are available for this Jeep.
Jeep Renegade vs Jeep Patriot Winner:
Base model: Jeep Patriot
At such a low entry-level price, the capable Jeep Patriot has incredible value. Plenty of space, classic jeep looks, and city maneuverability characterize this inexpensive vehicle. It is a practical, no nonsense option for those on a budget.
Upgrades: Jeep Renegade
Fully loaded, the Jeep Renegade is a force to be reckoned with. A youthful look, features galore, off-road capability and in town drivability characterize this small Jeep. It’s a versatile package with overall quality that the Patriot cannot match.
Overall winner: 2015 Jeep Renegade
There’s a reason the automotive industry can’t stop talking about the all-new Jeep Renegade. When comparing the Jeep Renegade vs Jeep Patriot, the Renegade is the modern, updated option. Although long-time Jeep fans may appreciate the Patriot more for its classic appearance, the Renegade is a youthful, relevant, capable, tech-savvy subcompact vehicle that will be very competitive in the small car market.
Do you prefer the Jeep Patriot or Jeep Renegade? Let us know in the comments below!