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Long-term review

Jeep Avenger - long-term review

£39,600 / £42,125 as tested / £519pcm
Published: 15 Mar 2024
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SPEC HIGHLIGHTS

  • SPEC

    Jeep Avenger Summit

  • Range

    248.5 miles

  • ENGINE

    1cc

  • BHP

    154.2bhp

  • 0-62

    9.6s

Living with a Jeep Avenger: a month to forget for the £40k EV

Guess what? Spend a week driving around in a £115k, V8 Porsche Cayenne S Coupe and when you get back in a £40k electric Jeep it feels flimsy, floppy and cramped. Clearly, this is about as helpful as me pointing out a lilo isn’t quite as luxurious as a cruise ship, but I wanted to state the obvious anyway as it’s been a month to forget for the Avenger.

Last time out you’ll recall, the heater was on the blink – pumping out an Arctic blast regardless of the required temperature, before roasting your eyeballs when you least expect it. Not ideal in the middle of British winter. Then the lane keep assist had a meltdown, insisting on nudging me to the far right of my lane whenever the cruise control was activated, even if the lane assist was switched off. The car is now back with Jeep having its ECU scrubbed out and new software poured in.

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Funny how a couple of niggles switch your outlook from all sunshine and roses, to highly suspicious, because right now I can’t stop finding things that irk. Let’s start with the range (to be fair this isn’t a Jeep Avenger problem exclusively, but something you should all be aware of before buying an EV): Jeep’s WLTP claim is 249 miles, but we all know that’s not attainable in the real world. I’m seeing 220 miles indicated on 100 per cent charge, but that’s ambitious in this cold weather, more like 200 miles if I drive like a saint.

But I don’t, I drive like a normal person, and when my journey involves a motorway, even when I stick religiously to 70mph, that plummets to more like 170 miles. Except nobody’s got the minerals to play chicken with the battery indicator, so that means only roundtrips of 150 miles or less are within the car’s true comfort zone. Totally fine for a city dweller like me, most of the time, but enough to rule others out.

I’m also getting irritated with the cupholder situation. There’s a big storage bin beneath the iPad-cover-style-folding-magnet-cover-thing (fun at first, now clear how shabby that will look in a few years’ time), but put a water bottle in and it rattles around everywhere, and blocks your hand’s path to the wireless charging matt right at the back. Beneath the armrest there’s more storage with moveable dividers, but they don’t lock a bottle in place. More rattling. Door pockets look good but aren’t deep enough to take an average width hydration vessel. It’s driving me mad. I like the shelf though, that’s useful.

Did you know that Jeep wasn’t going to bring petrol and hybrid versions of the Avenger to the UK initially, but have changed their minds? This could be a problem, because while I love the serenity and silkiness of the EV powertrain. do I love it enough to swallow a £12k price and 419kg weight difference? More on that soon because Jeep is sending me the petrol version while the EV gets fixed.

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