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2013 Jeep Compass

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2013 Jeep Compass Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 5.4

Although it wears the Jeep name and "Trail Rated' badge, the 2013 Jeep Compass compact SUV isn't exactly born of the same metal that forges the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee. Built from a platform once shared with the now-defunct Dodge Caliber, the Compass is more car than truck, more commuter than off-road warrior. Competing with such established names as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester, the Compass has its work cut out for it, especially considering most of its newer rivals outshine it in the areas of engine technology, fuel economy and features. As a commuter vehicle sometimes tossed into foul-weather conditions, the Compass is fine. But as a serious off-roader, it just doesn't live up to the Jeep name.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you like the look of the Grand Cherokee, but don't need its off-road ability or lofty price tag, the Jeep Compass for 2013 might be an option. Its 4-wheel drive can venture over light off-road obstacles, and its 30-mpg highway fuel economy should help ease the pain at the pump.

You May Not Like This Car If...

As a serious off-road vehicle, the Jeep Compass isn't our first (or even second) choice. As a daily driver, the Compass doesn't fare much better. Its engines are crude and underpowered, its interior outdated and its resale value is nowhere near that of the best in the field.

What's New for 2013

When equipped with the 2.0-liter engine and 5-speed manual, the 2013 Jeep Compass compact SUV earns 30-mpg highway.

Driving the Compass
Driving Impressions

The 2013 Jeep Compass offers a choice of two 4-cylinder engines, neither of which strikes us as terribly refined or powerful. The larger 2.4-liter engine would be our first choice,...

... delivering decent acceleration and fuel economy. Of course, the beauty of a car-based crossover is its on-road composure, and both the steering and suspension of the 2013 Jeep Compass provide decent connectivity to the road. That good news, however, is diminished by Jeep's continued use of the CVT automatic transmission; we suggest you opt for the base Compass with the manual transmission.

FREEDOM DRIVE II OFF-ROAD PACKAGE
With Freedom Drive II the 2013 Compass achieves Jeep's "Trail Rated" moniker, a credible achievement given its car-based roots. With what Jeep describes as a second-generation CVT with low range, in combination with all-terrain tires, a 1-inch-higher ride height and full-size spare tire, you can, indeed, get off the beaten path.

SUN AND SOUND GROUP
Combine nine Boston Acoustic speakers with two articulating liftgate speakers and Sirius satellite radio and you can have the music for a hearty party. Whether at the beach – and with either 4-wheel-drive option the 2013 Jeep Compass can deal with some sand – or at the trailhead, the optional sound system makes it easy to share the good times and good sounds with your friends.

2013 Jeep Compass Details
Interior

The interior of the 2013 Jeep Compass includes soft-touch materials on the door trim, a comfortable center armrest and a steering wheel that provides decent feel and grip. Other details include a Uconnect media center with iPod interface, available Sirius satellite radio and navigation, illuminated cup holders, liftgate speakers and fold-flat rear seats. The end result is not unattractive, but pricing for a well-equipped Compass can easily climb into the $30,000 range.

Exterior

At their launch in 2007 both the Compass and Patriot wore front fascias with strong family resemblances to the Jeep Wrangler, with 7-slot grilles and one round headlight per side, but the 2013 Jeep Compass now more closely follows the look of the Grand Cherokee. However, while it looks less like the Dodge Caliber upon which it's based, you still can't think of it as looking like a real Jeep, and the architecture remains saddled with a relatively narrow track that will accept little more than smallish tires. In short, as a Jeep it still looks too much like an entry-level hatchback.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Offered in three trim levels – Sport, Latitude and Limited – the 2013 Jeep Compass SUV is not without features, both standard and optional. The availability of a 5-speed manual (Sport only) is a nice surprise, especially for those not wanting Chrysler's optional continuously-variable transmission (CVT). The 4-wheel independent suspension is another bonus and, to Jeep's credit, even base Sport models offer numerous standard comfort and convenience features, including air conditioning, power door locks, power windows, cruise control, power heated outside mirrors, a removable and rechargeable flashlight and Uconnect media center.

Optional Equipment

The availability of Freedom Drive II gives the 2013 Jeep Compass the semblance of a low range for aggressive off-roading. You won't, to be sure, want to go boulder hopping (there simply isn't enough ground clearance), but you'll be pleasantly surprised with the capabilities of the Compass, when so equipped, to deal with slick surfaces and bad weather. Beyond that, we'd mention the All-weather Capability Group, which includes all-season floor mats, engine-block heater, all-terrain tires and tow hooks; the All-weather Capability Group may be the best way to make this "pretend" Jeep feel more like the real thing.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Jeep Compass' base engine is a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder of 158 horsepower. We recommend the optionally available 2.4-liter four, which makes 172 horsepower and is standard with the up-market Limited trim level and mandatory if you select either of the two 4-wheel-drive packages.

2.0-liter inline-4
158 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
141 lb-ft of torque @ 5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/30 mpg (FWD, manual), 22/28 mpg (FWD, automatic)

2.4-liter inline-4
172 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
165 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/28 mpg (FWD, manual), 21/27 mpg (FWD, CVT), 23/28 mpg (4WD, manual), 21/26 mpg (Freedom Drive I 4WD, CVT), 20/23 mpg (Freedom Drive II w/Off-Road package, 4WD, CVT)

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2013 Jeep Compass Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.6
Out of 10

Based on 38 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    7.7/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    7.1/10
  • Comfort
    7.7/10
    Styling
    7.7/10

You get what you pay for

By on Saturday, July 9, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,060

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Great looking exterior and cost"

Cons: "Break issues, cheap interior, no USB ports"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I love the exterior, everything else is basically just functional and looks a little cheaply made. For a day to day family car, the price seems fair. Experienced immediate break issues, but luckily I had the warranty to still get it fixed. I have slight buyers remorse, but again, you get what you paid for."

A comfortable ride, good mileage and decent power.

By on Monday, June 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "ride and handling make it a pleasure to drive."

Cons: "The rear posts which obstruct your view."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My overall rating is a 9 because the rear posts obstruct your view and IMO make a back-up camera a must."

Capable but crude

By on Wednesday, June 8, 2016

I don't own this car

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
4/10
Comfort
3/10

Pros: "Decent drivetrain, decent mileage, nice size."

Cons: "Poor visibility, crude interior, rather noisy"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"We rented a Sport for a week of vacationing in New England. While handling and acceleration are quite good, and fuel economy decent, this model falls short of the competition in comfort. The side sills and cowl are high, the window pillars wide, the side mirrors huge, the rear window tiny, and the driver has to sit way too low. I had to check three times to keep from mowing down pedestrians and bicyclists in Provincetown's crowded streets. Really, while I like the size and style off the compact crossover, the fit and feel of this one is huge."

Dark Horse SUV Crossover

By on Wednesday, May 18, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,100

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Being at the lower end of the crossover SUV market, the Compass takes a bit of flak from the gearhead youtube sensations who decide on what constitutes a good car these days. However, those guys are letting their testosterone get the better of them and they're totally wrong about the Compass. It's smooth, it's comfortable and it's efficient with gas. Not to mention being very reasonably priced compared to its peers. If you're looking for huge amounts of torque then you may be better off looking elsewhere but if you need a solid family car that has some basic off road ability and good amounts of space and features then the Compass is a great choice especially given the low price tag for a second hand model. Buy with confidence."

21 people out of 22 found this review helpful

Just OK

By on Sunday, April 3, 2016

I don't own this car

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Gets you around"

Cons: "rough idle - not a great deal of space"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2

"I had one of these as a rental in Florida with about 30K miles on it. The brakes squealed like a newborn piglet and the idle in drive with the A/C on was so rough it was nauseating. I'm looking forward to trying an Escape or Explorer."

10 people out of 14 found this review helpful

I can't believe Jeep made such a lousy SUV :(

By on Sunday, January 17, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,200

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "good price, but you get what you pay for"

Cons: "too much to list"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I have always had a Jeep product. This was my first Compass. I hate this vehicle! I have the High Altitude version, which is such a joke. It has a loud and very weak engine. If you need to accelerate quickly, this is NOT the vehicle for you! It's useless in the snow, even with winter tires. For the people who like this vehicle, Jeep is very lucky to have you."

15 people out of 22 found this review helpful

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