2019 Jeep Compass

Performance


MSRP
$22,095
U.S. News Best Price Program

2019 Jeep Compass Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 6.1

The 2019 Jeep Compass is a solid off-roader, offering a bevy of equipment for touring rocky and rough terrain. It’s also smooth and composed on the road, giving its occupants a comfortable ride. It’s not all that agile, though, and its acceleration is sluggish.

  • "The Compass has a substantial feel to it, and that's a good thing. It more readily absorbs the kind of little bumps that most crossovers transmit straight to the driver." -- Edmunds
  • Simply put, despite its size, the Compass does not feel small, lithe or nimble as do many competitors. If planted, stable and slow are more your speed, the Compass will be more your style." -- Cars.com (2017)
  • The Compass' road manners, like its design, are more mature than the Renegade's; it feels more buttoned down and not quite so playful. I wasn't crazy about the steering; as you move off center, it responds too slowly, then too quickly, like a security guard that has been caught napping." -- Automobile Magazine (2017)

Acceleration and Power

Jeep offers one engine for the 2019 Compass: a 2.4-liter MultiAir four-cylinder that produces 180 horsepower and 175 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, but most models feature either a six-speed or nine-speed automatic transmission. Power and acceleration are both lackluster. It's fine for getting around town, but passing on the highway might require some planning.

With the six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive, the Compass earns fuel economy estimates of 22 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. Models with the nine-speed automatic and four-wheel drive get 22/30 mpg. Both figures are in line with the estimates of many other compact SUVs.

  • "Its only engine choice is not a great one." -- Autotrader
  • "Acceleration is marginal even if you bury the pedal, with a 0-60 mph time of 10.1 seconds. The 2.4-liter engine doesn't make pleasant sounds under these conditions either. If you go light on the gas pedal, it tends to upshift a gear or two too high, exacerbating the tepid power delivery." -- Edmunds
  • Acceleration is anemic, though there's a decent amount of torque right off the bat. Power output figures … are enough to get the job done, but this SUV could do with some help from a turbocharger, and the 9-speed is just confused when mated to an engine with such a small power output. It shifts smoothly in relaxed driving, but when pushed, takes seemingly seconds to decide what gear to be in, and even when it's chosen, the passing power just isn't quite there." -- New York Daily News (2017)

Handling and Braking

The Jeep Compass provides a comfortable ride, and its suspension smooths out rough patches in the road. Handling, however, is not this vehicle's strong suit. While the Compass is generally composed through turns, a few critics note inconsistent steering feel and excess body roll when cornering. Front-wheel drive is standard, while two four-wheel-drive systems are available.

Off road, the Compass lives up to the Jeep name. An off-road suspension, hill descent control, a Selec-Terrain system, skid plates, tow hooks, and other adventuring gear are available. When the trail gets tough, the Jeep Compass remains capable, especially the Trailhawk model.

  • Now, it's not as cushy or refined as the similarly sized Cherokee, nor as agile as some compact SUV rivals, but it's otherwise confident and secure." -- Autotrader
  • "The ride is comfortably smooth, even over rough roads, with the suspension and high-profile tires taking the edge off the bumps. The Compass feels surprisingly substantial for a compact SUV." -- Edmunds
  • "Handling isn't the Compass' strong suit, either. I drove it on twisting, forested roads, and while the steering felt light for the first 30 degrees of travel, it firmed up considerably past that, resulting in overall feel that was both too light and too heavy. The Compass is also softly sprung, so while ride quality is good, the Compass tips and tilts in corners, with pronounced body roll. Handling isn't much better, with prominent understeer through corners." -- Cars.com (2017)
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2019 Jeep Compass

MSRP: $22,095 - $29,945

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