The Jeep Patriot has passenger-car roots, yet at the same time it's one of the most rugged crossovers in this compact class, with an actual low range available, along with all the shielding and upgrades to be 'Trail Rated.' As such, the Patriot competes with the Subaru Forester and Ford Escape, as well as other boxy urban vehicles like the Scion xB and Nissan Cube.
The Ford Escape has received a radical makeover for this year, however, and it's now far more sophisticated.
The Forester feels like a more substantial vehicle than the Patriot, and it's more refined and better-suited to family duty.
The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is a new model—essentially a shorter, lighter, more city-sized version of the Outlander; it also has just a little bit of off-road ability and has a more sprightly feel on the road.
On the other side, the Nissan Cube is something of a design oddity, taking the boxy, refrigerator look to a stylish extreme—and sacrificing some functionality in the process—while the Scion xB looks like it would offer quite a bit of space and versatility and it ends up surprisingly cramped.
Both the Cube and the xB aren't all that much better for gas mileage, though.
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|21 MPG City / 30 MPG Hwy||21 MPG City / 33 MPG Hwy||23 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy||25 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy||22 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy|
|Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas Flat 4||Gas I4|
|2WD Sport Utility Vehicles||Sport Utility Vehicle - 2WD||2WD Sport Utility Vehicle||Small Station Wagon||Sport Utility Vehicle - 4WD||Small Station Wagon|
|FWD 4-Door Sport||FWD 4-Door S||2WD 4-Door Manual ES||5-Door Wagon Manual S||4-Door Manual 2.5X PZEV||5-Door Wagon Manual (Natl)|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||All Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|Sport Utility||Sport Utility Vehicle||Sport Utility||Wagon||Sport Utility Vehicle||Wagon|
|Manual||Automatic w/Manual Shift||Manual||Manual||Manual||Manual|