New for 2015
A High Altitude package is available for 4×4 models with the six-speed automatic, adding leather seating, a power sunroof, power six-way driver seat, and 17-inch aluminum wheels. Navigation is now an available option on the Latitude, Eco Green Clear Coat replaces Rugged Brown as an exterior color option, and a dome light replaces the removable, rechargeable flashlight.
The Jeep Compass is a compact crossover that fits below the Cherokee and alongside the Patriot and new Renegade in the automaker’s lineup.
The 2015 Jeep Compass is available with two four-cylinder engines, three transmissions, and front- or four-wheel drive. The standard engine is a 2.0-liter I-4 that makes 158 hp and 141 lb-ft of torque, and can only be had in a FWD configuration. EPA-estimated fuel economy with the 2.0-liter: 23/30 mpg city/highway with a five-speed manual; 21/28 mpg with a six-speed automatic; and 22/27 mpg with a CVT.
Buyers who want 4WD on the 2015 Compass must upgrade to the 2.4-liter I-4 that makes 172 hp and 165 lb-ft of torque. The engine is also an available upgrade on FWD Sport and Latitude models. EPA-estimates: 23/28 mpg with FWD and a five-speed manual; 21/28 with FWD and a six-speed automatic; 22/27 mpg with 4WD and a five speed manual; 21/27 mpg with Freedom Drive I 4WD and a six-speed automatic; and 20/23 with Freedom Drive II 4WD and a CVT. For the record, the Freedom Drive II 4WD is the only Trail Rated system available on the Compass.
The 2015 Jeep Compass received a three-star frontal crash and four-star rollover ratings from the NHTSA (out of a possible five stars), but has not been tested by the IIHS. The related Jeep Patriot was considered a 2013 Top Safety Pick, but received a rating of poor in the small front overlap test, preventing it from earning the coveted rating for 2014.
What We Think
The Jeep Compass received a “Trail Rated” version back in 2011, which is the last time we drove one. We noted that the revisions had significantly improved the handling, saying “the Compass now inspires confidence instead of fear when you turn the wheel.” The styling, which resembles the Grand Cherokee, was much improved and the interior was bestowed with numerous soft touch materials. The addition of a proper six-speed automatic was welcomed in 2014, but you still have to opt for the CVT to get the highest-rated 4×4 system.
A 2015 Jeep Compass actually provides a compelling argument for the new Jeep Cherokee: a Cherokee with FWD will best the Compass (with the smaller I-4) highway rating of 30 mpg with 31 mpg, or 29 mpg with the V-6. The Cherokee starts at $23,000, about $4000 more than a base-model Compass that lacks power windows and locks.
- Offers a six-speed automatic
- Looks like a mini Grand Cherokee
- Trail Rated model has reasonable off-roading chops
You Won’t Like
- Fuel economy is poor
- Buying a Compass when you could get a Cherokee for not much more
- Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
- Ford Escape
- Mazda CX-5
- Subaru Forester
- Honda CR-V