Jeep intends to become “the greenest, most sustainable SUV company,” according to the brand’s global president, Christian Meunier. And yet today it doesn’t have a single plug-in vehicle in its U.S. lineup.
Speaking to Autocar, in a Tuesday report, the Jeep boss anticipated that the U.S. will move to electrification faster than most predict, and he noted that going electric is “an opportunity to improve the capabilities of our trucks and SUVs and make it even more exciting off-road and on-road.”
Plug-in hybrid versions of the Renegade, Compass, and Wrangler are all due this year, with the Renegade 4xe appearing to be the first and arriving to Europe soon. While FCA hasn’t confirmed whether the PHEV Renegade and Compass are headed to the U.S., it has heavily teased the Wrangler, which is built on some components carried over from the Pacifica Hybrid van, as one that America will get.
Jeep already sells a Grand Commander plug-in hybrid in China. The upcoming models Jeep's chief is speaking of aren’t limited to Europe or China, however. Earlier this year Meunier told Car and Driver that it would be bringing “as many electric Jeeps as it can” to the U.S.
Jeep Wrangler plug-in hybrid
Meunier said that in plug-in hybrid or fully electric form, the Wrangler Rubicon will be able to get to 60 mph in six seconds and outperform the gasoline or diesel Wrangler. “You’re going to get the most capable Jeep ever,” he declared.
Like other upcoming electrified trucks—the upcoming Ford F-150 Hybrid, for instance—the electric and electrified Jeeps will offer power takeoffs, making them especially useful for camping or worksites.
Jeep had previously declared that there would be four electric vehicles in Jeep’s global portfolio by 2022, but it hasn’t solidified any of those yet.
Fiat Chrysler hasn’t exactly been known for going above and beyond in complying with emissions targets. But that’s started to cost the company dearly. The automaker, which relies heavily on trucks in its mix, has had to purchase U.S. emissions credits from other automakers—especially Tesla.
In Europe FCA reached an agreement last year with Tesla, reportedly worth about $2 billion, to pool its fleet in order to comply with European CO2 standards.
Some of these vehicles could be coming quite soon, as the company shuffled manufacturing locations last year in order to facilitate future electrified Jeeps. In the meantime, Green Car Reports confirmed with FCA that Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe plug-in hybrid models will both be available in Europe starting this summer.