On Monday at Mirafiori Motor Village in Turin, Italy, e-Mobility by FCA delivered two Jeep® Renegade 4xe models to RSE (Ricerca sul Sistema Energetico – Energy Systems Research), under a partnership agreement whereby the plug-in hybrid cars will be driven for six months to prepare detailed reports on how they work, with an aim of anticipating customers’ normal usage of their fleets over time.
RSE conducts research in the electrical sector, focusing on strategic domestic and international products. The company works in tandem with local and central government to support manufacturing in the broadest sense, in conjunction with small and medium-sized enterprises and consumer associations. With 350 employees and more than 250 researchers, RSE provides research and development services for the entire electrical energy supply chain. Working mainly on an application and experimental basis, they ensure consistency in the continuation of ongoing research and in the development of new frontiers for the entire Italian energy system.
The Jeep Renegade 4xe models delivered Monday will be used by RSE as pooled corporate vehicles and for personal use, to replace the current models in the company’s fleet. The tests will also evaluate the advantages of these new cars in terms of consumption and costs.
The medium-term objective at RSE is to electrify its fleet for use in an experimental case study. On the other hand, FCA is interested in enabling potential customers to test their cars in real-world scenarios; the agreement is therefore a significant opportunity for cooperation.
A wide range of parameters will be checked during the tests, to evaluate the two cars’ technical specifications and performance. Fuel consumption will be analyzed in different ways over replicable “medium to long” routes (departures with varying battery charge levels, using hybrid mode or combustion engine mode only, etc.) and “short” routes, to evaluate factors such as range in electric mode, variations according to route, weather conditions and vehicle load, and to investigate the possibility of using the cars with an empty fuel tank.
The massive volumes of data gathered during the tests will be highly significant for FCA technicians, who may receive an amount of information in a short period of time that would only have come to light after a much longer period of usage by customers. FCA will therefore be rapidly made aware of any critical issues that may arise and will be able to resolve them before these issues occur during normal use by customers.
The Jeep Renegade 4xe models are easily recognizable by the visual customization on the side panels – with the wording “RSE running with FCA e-Mobility” – and by the 190 horsepower Limited trim with its wide range of features, including 17-inch aluminum wheels, integrated navigator, LED headlights, the Dusk & Rain, Parking and Function packs, privacy glass and Adaptive Cruise Control.
The two Jeep Renegade 4xe models for the long-term test were delivered in person by Roberto Di Stefano, Head of EMEA e-Mobility at FCA. “From the information to be provided to us from as qualified and experienced a partner as RSE,” he said, “this trial will enable us to rapidly process data and information and learn even more about normal customers’ usage of our vehicles.”
Maurizio Delfanti, CEO of RSE, officially received the two cars: “We’re convinced that energy systems research also requires the operational resources of our fleet of vehicles, to gain valuable information on optimum electrical energy management through practical experience. Working on these aspects together with FCA and being some of the first in Italy to experience the new plug-in hybrid Jeeps is an honor for us. Over the next few months, we will therefore be able to achieve significant results relating to both car usage and their interaction with the power grid.”
The joint program will conclude in late 2020, when the Jeep Renegade 4xe testing models will be returned to FCA for technician analysis of their condition.