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SAFETY | 8 out of 10
Four stars, front impact--driver and passenger; five stars, side impact--driver, passenger, and rear passenger
Visibility...is impeded by thick roof pillars
Although it is a reasonably safe vehicle, TheCarConnection.com scores the 2008 Jeep Compass slightly lower than the similar 2008 Jeep Patriot due to a lower crash-test rating for the front passenger.
The 2008 Jeep Compass received four of five stars from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on front impact protection for the driver and passenger as well as rollover resistance (both 2WD and 4WD). The Jeep Compass received five stars for side impact protection for both driver and rear passengers.
Although the Compass has not been tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the Dodge Caliber, which shares the Chrysler C-segment platform from which the Jeep Compass and Patriot has been derived, receives a "good" rating for the frontal offset crash test and a "marginal" rating for both the side impact and rear crash protection tests. It is likely that the Jeep Compass will have a similar IIHS rating, but this is not yet confirmed.
In addition to its decent crash-test ratings and rollover avoidance in this Jeep, 2008 models come with many standard safety features like ABS, front airbags, and a tire pressure monitoring system. Jeep also equips the Compass with stability control and full-length side curtain airbags, both of which Edmunds refers to as "important safety features." Kelley Blue Book says traction control is standard. Side airbags are an option on the Compass.
Some reviewers find the roof pillars or seats of the Compass block their view. Kelley Blue Book finds the rear view most obscured, saying, "Drivers must deal with rear quarter blind spots." ConsumerGuide notes more faults with visibility, adding, "Visibility to front corners and over-the-shoulder is impeded by thick roof pillars, and to the rear by tall headrests."
The 2008 Jeep Compass has good standard safety features and crash-test ratings, but poor driver visibility.