The Compass was originally panned for its homely styling and chintzy interior, but that changed a couple of years ago, when Chrysler tweaked the design modestly, just enough to give it a makeover as a 'mini-Grand Cherokee' but not enough to overcome the rather low-rent look and feel of the interior.
Although the 2013 Compass still looks a little awkward from some angles, the nips and tucks worked wonders, and it's now even somewhat attractive on the outside. The proportions are the same as before, with the boxy wheelwell outline and smooth rear-pillar upkick preserved. The front end is essentially a smaller, softer version of the Grand Cherokee's, while the taillamps have also been softened. Overall, the Compass has a vaguely sleeker, classier look from some angles, but from others there's still a hint of ungainliness.
With that last refresh, the Compass also got a spruce-up inside; but unlike the extensive makeover given to the interior of the Dodge Journey crossover, this one still looks cheapish. It's a straightforward and functional look—and it's appealing in appearance if not always touch. The Compass doesn't quite get the total makeover that several other Jeep and Chrysler products have received over the past year or two. There are better materials and a cleaner look, but it definitely feels done on a budget. Optional leather seats get contrasting piping—which is an odd ode to luxury vehicles in one that has plenty of obvious plastic-chrome accents.