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2011 Jeep Compass Preview

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Chrysler's revised-model onslaught continues with the 2011 Jeep Compass, restyled and with several new standard features to better position itself in the fuel-efficient crossover segment. Borrowing some of its new looks from the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, the Compass should have a broader appeal than its somewhat frumpy forebear.

Key upgrades for the 2011 Compass include a retuned suspension with stiffer springs, damping, and rear anti-roll bar for a more controlled highway ride, while a new available Freedom Drive II package steps up the Compass's off-road capability. The design is heavily revised as well, with a new hood, fenders, nose, and head lights presenting a more modern face.

Inside, the 2011 Compass gets more soft-touch elements, upgraded materials, a new steering wheel with audio and hands-free phone controls, improved cloth upholstery, and a number of power accessories as standard.

The Freedom Drive II system gains Jeep's Trail Rated badge, bringing a continuously-variable transaxle that engages in off-road mode, a one-inch higher ride height, skid plates, and a full-size spare. Appearance elements of the Freedom Drive II package included 17-inch alloy wheels, and fog lamps. The Freedom Drive II package is recommended for "moderate off-road situations," including steep grades, occasional wheel lift, and rock or log climbing.

For those with less serious off-road needs, the Freedom Drive I package is available, offering a full-time four-wheel-drive system with a locking mode to better handle deep snow, sand, and low-draction situations. The standard 2011 Compass drive system is still a front-wheel-drive unit.

Three trim levels are available for 2011: the Compass, Latitude, and Limited. All three can be had with any of the off-road packages, with the primary differentiation being on the level of interior equipment.

Power for the 2011 model comes from the 2.0-liter World Engine four-cylinder, rated at 158 horsepower and 141 pound-feet of torque. The engine is good for 23 mpg in town and 29 mpg on the highway with the five-speed manual transmission. An upgraded 2.4-liter World Engine with 172 horsepower and 165 pound-feet of torque is an available upgrade, still managing the same impressive mileage with the five-speed manual. The entry-level Compass trim gets the five-speed manual standard, with a CVT standard on the Latitude and Limited models.

The 2011 Jeep Compass will hit dealerships this month. Pricing and options haven't yet been released.

[Chrysler]

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Comments (3)
  1. GOOD NEWS- Jeep has done a masterful job of improving the looks and quality of the Compass and Patriot
    BAD NEWS- The Nissan sourced CVT is not worthy of these two products, that hurts.
    MORE GOOD NEWS- By puting this investment in these twins it indicates a strong future for them.
    I do believe, as the Caliber goes away, that it leaves more latitude to distinguish these two from each other as very different approaches, or , the Compass my become the smaller entry level Jeep being planned. In any case Jeep has plans for these two smaller Jeep for sure. The Compass looks great by the way!
     
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  2. WOW! Huge improvement on the front end. Doesn't look cheap anymore.
     
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  3. Looks OK, but why does Jeep continue to sale both the Compass and Patriot. They are basically the same with some styling differences. I think the Patriot is the better of the two and more Jeep like.
     
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