Jeep Carries FCA Again, Renegade Near Top Of Subcompact Crossover Heap

Timothy Cain
by Timothy Cain
jeep carries fca again renegade near top of subcompact crossover heap

In October 2015, not the first time, Jeep was FCA’s meal ticket in the United States.

Little more than one month ago, we discussed the fact that non-Jeep sales at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ U.S. division were unhealthy at best, particularly given the boom experienced by the industry as a whole.

Fortunately for FCA, October was different. Combined sales at Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, and Ram were up six percent last month. (The five lower-volume brands are down one percent, year-to-date.) Yet across the FCA lineup, as year-over-year sales improved by 25,065 units, Jeep accounted for 18,363 of those extra sales on its own, or 73 percent of the increased volume.

Jeep’s October 2015 results displayed 33-percent growth. The addition of an extra nameplate that wasn’t on sale in October 2014 certainly helped, but every established Jeep posted notable gains.

Even without the Renegade, Jeep sales shot up 19 percent, a greater rate of growth than that managed by the industry as a whole. The Cherokee, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Patriot, and Wrangler combined for 10,568 more new vehicle sales in the U.S. in October 2015 than they did in October 2014. Jeep’s Renegade-excluded total from October 2015 was better than the brand’s total output from all but two months in 2014 and would represent the brand’s best-ever October volume.

JeepOctober2015October2014% Change10 mos. 201510 mos. 2014% ChangeCherokee17,67315,71512.5%178,785114,05724.3%Grand Cherokee16,05014,9937.1%157,899151,3034.4%Wrangler15,75113,66515.3%173,264147,73317.3%Patriot10,1916,52456.2%98,91076,48229.3%Renegade7,795——44,626——Compass6,1014,30141.9%52,98752,2191.5%—— —————Total73,56155,198 33.3% 706,471571,58523.6%

But Jeep did sell Renegades in October 2015: 7,795 of them, to be precise. This was down four percent from August’s high-water mark; down two percent from September’s results. Heading into October, Automotive News estimated that Jeep dealers had a 95-day supply of Renegades, well above the 60-day industry average. With Renegade sales failing to stray too far above or below 8,000/month and Renegade supply plentiful, we can assume sales of the smallest Jeep have leveled off for the time being.

That leveling off, however, represents near category-topping volume. Among direct rivals, only the Chevrolet Trax sold more often in October. The Renegade outsold the Subaru XV Crosstrek and Buick Encore by 482 and 1,162 units, respectively. For every Honda HR-V sold in America in October, Jeep sold 1.7 Renegades. The Renegade’s fraternal Fiat twin, the 500X, produced its best month yet in October, but with only 2,178 sales – the 500X has increased its U.S. volume every month since launch – the Renegade outsold the Fiat by more than 3.5-to-1.

Subcompact UtilityOctober2015October2014% Change10 mos. 201510 mos. 2014% ChangeChevrolet Trax8,175——51,226——Jeep Renegade7,795——44,626——Subaru XV Crosstrek7,3135,37236.1%74,05159,67524.1%Buick Encore6,6334,78038.8%55,91841,21335.7%Honda HR-V4,502——33,727——Mitsubishi Outlander Sport3,0942,46825.4%30,65525,62019.7%Fiat 500X2,178——5,634——Nissan Juke1,8041,7682.0%23,26634,021-31.6%Mazda CX-31,382——3,420——Mini Countryman1,2192,035-40.1%13,27819,159-30.7%Mini Paceman23183-87.4%1,3401,682-20.3%—— —————Total44,11816,606 166% 337,141181,37085.9%

The Outlander Sport, Juke, CX-3, Countryman, Paceman? Combined, they didn’t sell as often in October as the Renegade, let alone the Trax.

Despite the attention they receive, subcompact utilities continue to form a small percentage of the overall market. The Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Nissan Rogue – America’s three top-selling SUVs/CUVs in October – were nearly twice as common as the whole subcompact group last month. Jeep’s own Cherokee, America’s seventh-best-selling utility vehicle this year, sold twice as often as the Renegade in October.

But what makes the subcompact segment noteworthy is its rate of expansion. True, the rapid growth won’t continue unabated. Moreover, the rapid growth is fuelled largely by the addition of new nameplates – in October 2014, the Trax, Renegade, HR-V, 500X, and CX-3 weren’t yet available. Yet the sales figures clearly suggest that the market will tolerate smaller and smaller vehicles with available all-wheel-drive, slightly elevated ride height, and SUV styling cues.

Say what you will about the little Jeep’s tinniness, its dreadful upgrade powertrain, poor ride quality, and fiddly optional roof, consumers sense a degree of authenticity in the Renegade. Perhaps they’ve seen the videos, perhaps they trust the brand. No matter how much grey cladding is added to the wheelarches of a Mazda CX-3, the Mazda will have to be twice the on-road partner that the Renegade is just to sell half as often.

The Jeep Renegade isn’t burdened by a lack of consumer belief. Instead, consumers seem to have enough faith in Jeep for the brand to overcome poor reliability ratings; enough faith for the Renegade to overcome negative reviews.

Timothy Cain is the founder of, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

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2 of 24 comments
  • Vulpine Vulpine on Nov 11, 2015

    Say what you want about the Renegade; it's clearly a polarizing model. All I know right now is that unless I see a true Jeep pickup truck before the middle of 2017, I will be replacing my '08 Wrangler with a Renegade.

  • LectroByte LectroByte on Nov 11, 2015

    The 500L didn't make the list but the Renegade is crushing it? Somewhere in FCA land, they're laughing so hard they peed their pants.

  • Duane Baldinger Ya my cupcake Mailman will love it!
  • Duane Baldinger Where can I send the cash? It's a surprise BDAY present for my cupcake Mailman. D Duane
  • Art Vandelay Pour one out for the Motors Liquidation Corporation
  • Bill Wade Norm, while true I'll leave you with this. My 2023 RAM is running Android 8 released in 2017.My wife's navigation on her GM truck is a 2021 release, I believe the latest. Android Auto seems to update very week or two. Now, which would you rather have? Anybody with a car a couple of years old NEVER sees any updates. Heck, if your TV is a few years old it's dead on updates. At least cell phones are rapidly updated. If your old phone won't update, buy another $200 phone. If your GM vehicle doesn't update do what, buy another $50,000 GM vehicle?
  • Lou_BC Once again, Mustang is the last pony car standing. Camaro RIP, Challenger RIP.