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TOTD: You Pick - 2015 Jeep Renegade or One of its Rivals?

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 1/28/2015 Karla Sanchez

The newest member of the Jeep family has finally arrived in the form of the Renegade. Like its name suggests, the Renegade is a bit different from the rest of its stablemates, but not enough for it to forsake what the brand stands for. Even with Italian roots, it's still unmistakably a Jeep with "Trail-Rated" off-road capability available in the range-topping Trailhawk model. But even though we liked our time with the Renegade, there are so many other new options to choose from in the now-inflated cute ute segment.

Jeep says the Renegade's chief rivals are the Nissan Juke, Chevrolet Trax, and Mini Countryman, but the newly introduced Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 could also be considered competitors since they're all roughly the same size and are available with all-wheel drive. But which crossover would you choose?

Prices for the Renegade start at $18,990 for a base front-drive Sport model and top out at $26,990 for a Renegade Trailhawk. Engine choices include a 1.4-liter turbo I-4 that makes 160 hp and 184 lb-ft or torque, and a 2.4-liter I-4 that makes 180 hp and 175 lb-ft. We particularly liked that the crossover was available with a six-speed manual transmission, though a nine-speed automatic is also available. Another bonus is that two different all-wheel drive systems are available. 2015 Jeep Renegade Latitude Rear Three Quarter 1© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 Jeep Renegade Latitude Rear Three Quarter 1

2015 Mini Countryman TOTD: You Pick - 2015 Jeep Renegade or One of its Rivals?

The Nissan Juke is slightly pricier for a base model. For $21,075, the Juke comes with a 188-hp 1.6-liter turbo I-4 and CVT, though all-wheel drive costs extra. While the Juke doesn't really have off-road chops, it is a racier option as its motorcycle-themed interior suggests. There are also the two Nismo options, which come standard with a six-speed manual transmission (in front-drive trim only).

As for the Honda HR-V, prices haven't been revealed yet, but the automaker announced that it tops out at 28/35 mpg city/highway in front-drive form and with a CVT. The HR-V is slow compared to the other two, with 138 hp from a 1.8-liter I-4. 2016 Honda HR V Front© Provided by MotorTrend 2016 Honda HR V Front

Notable features on the Mazda CX-3 include a 2.0-liter I-4, though we still don't know power figures. The engine is paired with a six-speed automatic and all-wheel drive is optional. Although we don't know too much about the CX-3 yet, it certainly is one of the better looking of the bunch, and with Mazda's "zoom-zoom" DNA, we don't doubt it'll be fun to drive.

The Mini Countryman is the quirkiest of them all, and also the most expensive. If you choose to pay to play, the Countryman is still zippy in base form with a 121-hp 1.6-liter I-4. If you want all-wheel drive, upgrading to the Cooper S Countryman is mandatory. The engine in the Countryman S has been turbocharged to make 181 hp, but that brings the price up to $28,700 if the six-speed manual stays. 2015 Mini Countryman© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 Mini Countryman

Then there's the Chevrolet Trax. When we drove it, we appreciated the "buckets of features." The base LS level came with a Chevrolet MyLink-enabled 7.0-inch touchscreen, OnStar with 4G LTE connectivity, Bluetooth, Siri Eyes Free, navigation support, and a rearview camera -- all for $25,905.

2015 Jeep Renegade Latitude Front View In Motion 2© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 Jeep Renegade Latitude Front View In Motion 2
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