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2013 Jeep Compass Overview

Justin Cupler
Automotive Editor - December 10, 2012

In the mid-2000s, Jeep was in trouble and had to abandon its old stereotype of building rugged SUVs that were built for the trail first and comfort came a distant second. One of the vehicles that spearheaded this revision was the Compass - a car-based crossover that looked like a shrunken Grand Cherokee.

Despite showing a little age, the 2013 Compass is a carryover from the 2012 model year, which means this is the seventh year for the first-generation Compass. This doesn’t mean that the 2013 Compass doesn’t have a few little differences from its 2012 counterpart. The main difference is the addition of the 2.0-liter World Gas Engine, which pumps out the same horsepower as last year’s model, but get 30 mpg on the highway. The other additions to the 2013 model year are two new colors: Winter Chill Pearl Coat and Black Forest Green Pearl Coat.

The 2013 Compass comes in three main trim levels: Sport, Latitude and Limited. Within these trim levels, a buyer can opt for either the standard front-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. For those that choose the four-wheel drive package, they can also opt for the Freedom Drive II Off-Road Group, which tosses in a 140-amp alternator, “4-Wheel Drive Off-Road” Mode, all-season floor mats, brake-lock differential, bright exhaust tip, fuel tank skid plate, hill descent control, hill start assist and all-terrain tires.

The Compact SUV realm is chock-full at the moment, so there are tons of options to choose from. The first competitor to the Compass is the 2013 Kia Sportage, which carries a base 2.4-liter engine with 176 horsepower (available 260-horsepower, 2.0-liter engine), cloth seating for five and 2,000-pound towing capacity. Next up is the 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, which has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 148 horsepower, gets 30 mpg highway and has cloth seating for five people. Last up is the 2013 Mazda CX-5, which comes with a 2.0-liter engine with 155 horsepower, gets 35 mpg highway with a manual transmission and can tow up to 2,000 pounds.

With all of the competition at play, the aging Compass needs to keep pace to hang on in this very competitive segment.

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