Back in July, the auto world was riveted to a story about two guys in St. Louis, Missouri who'd hacked into a Jeep Cherokee via its Uconnect software. A few days later, Jeep's parent company, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, recalled 1.4 million Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram vehicles to prevent others from doing the same.
The 2015 Jeep Renegade wasn't included on that list, but late last week, FCA recalled it to update its Uconnect software, too. The recall affects just over 7,800 vehicles registered in the U.S.
While the hardware in the 2015 Renegade differs from that in the other recalled FCA models, the problem is similar and could expose owners to hackers. As FCA points out, however, wreaking havoc on a Renegade wouldn't be easy, requiring a lot of technical skill and time to write code. FCA knows of no complaints, accidents, or injuries related to exploitation of security holes in the Renegade's Uconnect software.
The recall is limited to 2015 Renegade SUVs that came equipped with 6.5-inch touchscreens. FCA believes that the recall affects 7,810 vehicles, at least half of which remain on dealer lots and will be repaired before being sold.
As we saw with the larger FCA recall, this one can be carried out in a few different ways.
1. Owners can download the Uconnect update from DriveUconnect.com/software-update/, drop it onto a jump drive, and install it themselves.
2. Owners can also wait to receive a USB device from FCA, which will accompany the recall notice and will come pre-loaded with the update.
3. Owners can visit their Jeep dealer, who will carry out the update for them at no charge.
Owners are encouraged to visit DriveUconnect.com/software-update/ to see if their Renegade is included in the recall. Those with additional questions are asked to call FCA's US Customer Care Center at 800-853-1403.