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2013 Jeep Compass Review

Besides its good off-road capability, there’s little to recommend about the used 2013 Jeep Compass. It has underpowered engines, few standard features, and low crash test scores. 

Pros & Cons

  • Good off-road capability
  • Weak engine 
  • Few standard features
  • Cramped back seat




Critics' Rating: 6.1
Performance: 6.0
Interior: 6.8
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.3
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2013 Jeep Compass Overview

Is the 2013 Jeep Compass a Good Used SUV?

We would not consider a used 2013 Jeep Compass to be a good SUV. The Compass does not perform well on-road compared with rivals, and its off-road handling – while capable – doesn’t quite match up to Jeep’s reputation. The Compass also has below-average reliability.

Used 2013 Jeep Compass Performance and Interior

A 158-horsepower four-cylinder engine comes standard in Compass models equipped with front-wheel drive in the Sport and Latitude trims. Limited and all-wheel-drive models have a 172-horsepower four-cylinder engine. A five-speed manual transmission comes standard, and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) is available. Neither of the Jeep's engines are very powerful, and the available CVT further hampers acceleration. The Compass is built on a car platform, which provides it with better on-road driving dynamics than some other Jeeps. However, many rivals have better on-road handling than the Compass.

The Compass has two available four-wheel-drive systems. One is a full-time system that is similar to an all-wheel-drive system, while the other has a low-range capability that makes it suitable for light off-roading.

The Jeep’s EPA fuel economy rating is 23 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway with the smaller four-cylinder engine, rear-wheel drive, and a five-speed manual transmission. Those numbers shrink to 20/23 mpg city/highway with the larger engine, four-wheel drive, and a CVT.

Read more about Compass performance »

The Jeep Compass seats five on standard cloth upholstery. Leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats, and a power-adjustable driver’s seat are available. Headroom, visibility, and comfort are good in the front seats, but the second row may feel confining for some passengers. The Compass has two complete sets of LATCH child-seat connectors in the rear outboard seats. There is also a middle-seat tether anchor.

There are few standard features in the Compass beyond a four-speaker stereo system. Available features include automatic climate control, Bluetooth connectivity, navigation, and a Boston Acoustics stereo with flip-down tailgate speakers. The audio and climate controls are easy to use. There is a strange design issue, though. Sometimes the manual shifter can block the climate controls depending on what gear the transmission is in.

Read more about Compass interior »

Used 2013 Jeep Compass Prices

The price of a used 2013 Jeep Compass ranges from about $10,100 for the front-wheel-drive Sport trim to around $14,800 for the all-wheel-drive Limited trim. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 24 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 24 Jeep Compass reviews and included information on safety, reliability, fuel economy, and more to give you a comprehensive overview of the 2013 Compass.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking vehicles for a decade, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. To ensure our impartiality, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from carmakers or dealers, and an outside team handles our site’s advertising.

How Reliable Is the 2013 Jeep Compass?

The 2013 Compass has a reliability rating of 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power. A score of three out of five is about average for the auto industry. Many of the Compass' classmates also have below-average reliability.

See Compass reliability scores »

How Safe Is the Compass?

The 2013 Compass scored three out of five stars in overall safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It received three stars in the front crash test and four stars in the side crash and rollover tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Compass the highest possible rating of Good in the rear crash test. Compass models equipped with available side airbags earned the same rating in the side impact test. Models not equipped with side airbags earned a score of Marginal – the second lowest rating. The Compass lacks standard or available active safety features.

See Compass safety scores »

Is the 2013 Compass the Best Model Year to Buy?

The 2013 Jeep Compass is part of a generation that launched in 2007 and was refreshed inside and out for the 2011 model year. The Compass was fully redesigned for 2017. If you are looking to save money, one of the earlier models may suffice. The 2012 Compass received an updated continuously variable transmission, which makes it a better choice than the 2011 model. 

Compare the 2011, 2012, and 2013 Compass » 

Which Used Jeep Compass Is Right for Me?

The Compass comes in three trims: Sport, Latitude, and Limited. The Jeep Compass Sport trim's features list is pretty bare-bones, with only a four-speaker stereo system and an auxiliary jack standing out. The Jeep Compass Latitude trim adds features like remote start, heated cloth front seats, a height-adjusting driver's seat, a fold-flat front passenger seat, and a 115-volt power inverter. The top-of-the-line Limited trim includes leather seats, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, an upgraded stereo system with HD Radio and satellite radio, and automatic climate control. The Latitude trim offers the best value with its mix of comfort and practical features.

With the Compass’ below-average reliability, you might want to consider a certified pre-owned model. For certified pre-owned Jeep vehicles, the original new-car powertrain warranty is extended to seven years or 100,000 miles. CPO vehicles also get a three-month/3,000-mile Maximum Coverage Care warranty. There are restrictions related to mileage and models, so read the Jeep warranty page carefully. The model's original sale date determines whether it is eligible for the CPO program.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Jeep certified pre-owned program » 

2013 Jeep Compass and Other SUVs to Consider

Which Is Better: 2013 Jeep Compass or 2013 Ford Escape?

The 2013 Ford Escape is the better choice than the Compass in most ways, though neither is the most reliable vehicle. The Escape outranks the Compass with its better crash test scores, nicer interior, and better selection of engines. Though it outdoes the Compass in most areas, it has the lowest reliability rating possible.

Which Is Better: 2013 Jeep Compass or 2013 Jeep Patriot?

The 2013 Jeep Patriot is the Compass’ corporate sibling and the two SUVs are very similar. The main difference is that the Patriot is the better off-roader. However, the Compass has a nicer interior with better materials than the Patriot. Both Jeeps have weak engines and handling and both have below-average reliability. Frankly, neither Jeep is a good choice.

Compare the Compass, Escape, and Patriot »

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