It’s hard to imagine the 2021 Compass as anything other than it’s a Jeep. However, we do believe it’s one of the more attractive Jeep designs. Its ability to actually be able to withstand off-road terrain is rare in this category. Although it has the distinctive seven-slot grille, and comes with the equipment to tackle difficult terrain, its handling and interior aren’t as sophisticated than its closest competitors like those of the Mazda CX-5 and Honda CR-V. In addition, it lacks the same towing capacity or off-roading capabilities like it does the Jeep Cherokee. We’re not too fond of its insufficient four-cylinder engine as well as its sluggish automatic transmission , which is only available for all-wheel drive models. While the 2021 Compass is loaded with technology and functional cargo space, it’s still one of the most unattractive compact crossovers.
What’s New for 2021?
The Compass will be available in 2021 with a few minor modifications. The new 80th Anniversary Edition that’s based off it’s Latitude trim level. It features Granite Crystal 19-inch wheels leather seats with the contrast stitching feature, driver’s seat remote and an 8.4-inch touchscreen with a 115-volt power source as well as other features. Additional highlights include trim-specific badges as well as an Oak medallion-themed keyfob and piano-black and gunmetal inside accents. There are two trims: the Limited as well as the Trailhawk trims each add traditional active safety features including adaptive cruise control as well as lane-keeping aid.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
We’d increase the Compass value by sticking to the basic Sport model. If you desire the all-wheel-drive option, which swaps the six-speed automatic standard for a 9-speed auto and costs an additional $1500. We’re content with the 16-inch steel wheels in black and would prefer an Olive Green paint–one of the numerous color options that cost extra. The rock rails available safeguard the side sills when we have to leave the main road and the small spare tire will to keep us from becoming stuck in the case of a flat while we’re in the mountains. Inside, we believe it’s more appealing to have the Sandstorm leather upholstery much more attractive as opposed to the all-black look. Alongside it being the Cold Weather package (heated front seats and steering wheel remote start, heated seats and much more) We’d recommend to go with the Advance Safety and Safety and Security packages. The latter comes with a combination of blind-spot tracking and rear cross-traffic alerts and adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, and much more.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The four-cylinder engine in each Compass is sluggish and the optional nine-speed automatic transmission isn’t fast enough to complete shifts. Front-wheel models come with a 6-speed automatic. If you opt for all-wheel drive, you can take advantage of a range of different drive modes for tackling terrain. A setting that is automatic lets the vehicle direct force to each wheel however it feels is appropriate, while Snow, Sand, and Mud modes offer different amount of wheelslip to help improve grip. Trailhawk models have a lower “crawler” gear ratio and a Rock mode that holds the Compass in the first gear, and only directs torque to wheels that get grip. The Compass is less sluggish than its slim profile suggests that it responds quickly to inputs from the well balanced steering wheel. There’s some leaning during sharp turns however, overall the Compass feels well-controlled solidly planted and able on the road. A test course off-road that we took when we first tested the Compass proved that it could be able to hold its own with moderate challenges We noticed not an ounce of slipping from the all-wheel-drive system.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Although it is in a class that includes smaller cars, including some that are exclusively available in front wheel drive — the Compass is the same efficient as its competitors. The EPA predicts that in 2021, the Compass could achieve up to 22 mpg in the city as well as 31 highway. The most recent model we tested along our highway with a speed of 75 mph fuel economy route that is part of our comprehensive testing program, produced 29 mpg.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Inside, the Compass is comfortableand functional and spacious enough for four adults. The materials used in the cabin are not the best at all but not up to those in class-leading vehicles like those of the Honda CR-V or Mazda CX-5. Back seat in the Compass isn’t the biggest nor the tiniest of vehicles in this diverse small-crossover category. It’s not exactly a luxury car however, the its high seat lowers at the bottom of the seat make sure that legroom is well supported, so even long drives aren’t uncomfortable. Despite its slender exterior and what appears to be a high-volume in terms of cargo capacity the Compass isn’t the biggest of its kind. It’s got enough space to make it suitable for airport runs, but long trips can be an issue as the storage in the cabin is not the greatest. The seatbacks in the rear incline slightly when folded and the Compass could hold only 17 suitcases for carry-ons, when the seats were stowed.
Infotainment and Connectivity
Jeep’s Uconnect system is among our most favored infotainment configurations We’re thrilled to have it as a standard in the Compass line-up. Uconnect is simple to use and responds quickly to inputs, and no matter which Compass you choose, you’ll be treated to a well-organized touchscreen-infotainment system with a USB port and an auxiliary input.