Compass marks ‘exciting future’ for Jeep
Jeep will launch the new version of its Compass 4×4 next Friday while claiming that prospects for the brand have never looked brighter.
The last 12 months have been some turmoil for the famed 4×4 brand as parent company Chrysler was sold to Fiat and sister brand Dodge pulled out of the UK.
But management are hailing the launch of the Compass as the start of an ‘exciting future’ for Jeep, as it celebrates its 70th anniversary with several launches including a completely-new Grand Cherokee.
Bravest move on the new Compass is without doubt the availability of a two-wheel-drive version, never before offered by Jeep which has sold firmly on its off-road ability.
However Jeep promises that the Compass will still symbolize “free-spirited adventure” and be able to fully cope with adverse conditions on and off-road.
The Compass will, however, mark a shift in perception as Jeep aims to take some of the pure hatchback market, targeting drivers who want something more prominent than a family hatch but with similar practicality and style.
Jeep also believes the model will appeal to SUV owners downsizing from larger vehicles, and to impress them the Compass has been designed with an upgraded interior and looks clearly related to its Grand Cherokee sister.
The Compass will be offered with a 2.2-litre diesel engine of 134 and 161bhp outputs and sourced from former partner Mercedes-Benz, or petrol units of 2-litre and 2.4-litre sizes. The diesel is expected to take 65 per cent of sales.
The larger diesel and 2.4 petrol will also feature Jeep’s ‘Freedom Drive I’ active four-wheel-drive system with a lockable centre coupling. All models have been designed with a high stance and approach and departure angles to maintain their off-road prowess, even the two-wheel-drive variants able to ford water 379mm deep.
The Compass will offer four trim levels, prices ranging from £16,995 to £23,995.
Words by: Andrew Charman