Has your Jeep Renegade Nose-Dived?Has your Jeep Renegade Nose-Dived? There are some videos circulating from around the world (primarily out of the U.S. so far) that show with the right set of circumstances, you can get a Jeep Renegade to nose dive up on its front wheels (with the back wheels doing a high five in the air!). No, we’re not talking about a Joie Chitwood Show. These are everyday Renegades that are pretty much bone stock. Some would be a European spec vehicle and those are different in some ways from the American versions, but not that different.
It’s hard to replicate, and even some drivers are unable to get their Renegade to do it more than once or do it on demand. The effect seems to be caused when hard braking occurs. The front brakes are gripping so hard, it seems that the shift in weight to the front of the Renegade over compensates. A driver in Spain was able to get the Fiat Group to inspect his Renegade after it happened to him. They found a malfunction in the brake hydraulics, but reports don’t specify what the part was or how exactly it was happening (brake proportioning valve possibly?). Once the vehicle was repaired, the driver was unable to cause the exact nose dive again. However, further testing in a Renegade on a closed driving course (with cones), it appeared the vehicle understeered and had some control loss. The Renegade has a 5 Star rating by Europe’s car safety body, the EURO CAP, and has 4 out of 5 Stars with the America’s NHTSA. The NHTSA gives the Renegade a low 23% rollover risk. So it seems there has been plenty of testing on the Jeep Renegades. We're thinking these episodes might be very rare. For those of you who are older, you’ve heard things like this before. The Jeep CJ’s got a bad rap in the 70s or 80s with rollover issues and It used to be very expensive to even get insurance on them for a time. Then it was the Suzuki Samurai, constant videos on TV showing them failing driving through a set of cones. Some of the vehicles had these long bars extending from either side with wheels or skids, to prevent it from completely rolling over. A very visible (and oddly strange) thing to see. Maybe even scary looking. Then the Ford Explorer has a similar issue just a few short years ago. That was tire related for the cause, but in general, it was the rollover issue that made the videos highly visible on the TV stations. As with any top heavy SUV type vehicle, they are not a sports car and can’t be driven like one. They take a special kind of skill to pilot in certain situations, and they behave much different than traditional cars, especially at speed. So while you can, in some cases, get a Renegade to nose dive in certain conditions, it’s hard to say that’s normal. It doesn’t quite happen enough to get much attention. There are no flags going up about a recall. Most drivers probably don’t drive aggressive enough in a Renegade to be able to create the situation. Have you had a similar experience? Has your Renegade nose dived?