Why we like the new Jeep Compass so much? For its distinctive Jeep design of course. But apart from looking good, the special ‘plus’ features and driving are big fun. The compact SUV is the ideal car to dwell around in the city at the same time offering benchmark off-road capability.
Text & photos Anja Van Der Borght
Did you know that the compact SUV segment to which the new Jeep Compass belongs is the largest SUV segment in Europe? Not so surprising if you consider that these cars combine the fun and practical aspect of an SUV with the comfort of not taking too much parking space in town. The Jeep Compass offers all this and takes it even a step further. Really, the new Compass makes quantum leaps ahead of its predecessor: the generic styling of the car made room for a characterful personality. Besides being stylish, well equipped in infotainment and interior items it offers excellent off-road capability.
For our test drive we opted for the Limited configuration – that is the top-of-the-range trim in terms of refinement, standard technological contents and equipment.
Inside the Beats audiosystem 506W with 9 speakers incl. subwoofer immediately catches the eye and invites us to pump up the volume. Wow, this sounds party like. As does the engine: the 1.4-liter MultiAir engine with Stop&Start delivering 140 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 230 Nm of torque at 1,750 rpm. This gasoline is not the fastest or most powerful in the range but it is a pretty fun driving in combination with the easy shifting six-speed manual gearbox and the 4×2 frontwheel drive configuration. Small detail: the knob of the gear stick covered in mat chrome material feels so great that you want to keep resting your hand on it. Further on we enjoy the high seating position which gives as a good overview over traffic but apart from that the visibility through the back and sidewindows is also great.
Apart from this edition, you can choose your Jeep Compass in ‘Sport’, ‘Longitude’ and last but not least ‘Trailhawk’, offering Trail Rated 4×4 capability through specific standard features designed for customers demanding the most in terms of off-road capability thanks to two intelligent full-time 4×4 systems: the Jeep Active Drive and the Jeep Active Drive Low, the latter with 20:1 crawl ratio, each of which can send 100 percent of available torque to any one wheel when needed. Both Jeep Active Drive and Active Drive Low 4×4 systems include the Jeep Selec-Terrain system, providing up to five modes (Auto, Snow, Sand and Mud modes, plus exclusive Rock mode on the Trailhawk model).
Apart from the 1.4-liter MultiAir engine with 140 horsepower the petrol engine offering includes also the 1.4-liter MultiAir engine producing 170 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and torque of 250 Nm at 2,500 rpm, paired to the nine-speed automatic transmission and 4×4 configuration. The diesel engine range comprises the efficient 1.6-liter MultiJet II with Stop&Start delivering 120 horsepower at 3,750 rpm and 320 Nm of torque at 1,750 rpm, paired to the six-speed manual gearbox and 4×2 configuration, and the 2.0-liter MultiJet II with Stop&Start delivering 140 horsepower at 4,000 rpm and 350 Nm of torque at 1,750 rpm, paired either to the nine-speed automatic or the six-speed manual transmission and the 4×4 configuration. A higher output version of the 2.0-liter MultiJet II with Stop&Start – delivering 170 horsepower in combination with the nine-speed automatic transmission and 4×4 configuration (including the Trailhawk specific low range mode) – completes the diesel offer available on the all-new Compass.
With a capacity of 438 liter the trunk offers enough space for all your shopping bags and much more.
All this at a starting price of 24,900 Euros? What else are you looking for.