The 2019 Jeep Compass is all about finding the perfect balance of size, roominess, ruggedness, and style between the Renegade and Cherokee. Is this gap-bridging crossover the perfect fit for your family? Keep reading to find out.

Best Value

The 2019 Jeep Compass nestles itself in a tight niche between the Jeep Renegade and Cherokee. Despite being crammed into a tight spot, the 2019 Compass offers a full allotment of trim levels for buyers to choose from: Sport, Latitude, Trailhawk, and Limited.

Each trim caters to a specific group, but the Latitude model offers the best bang for the buck thanks to its additional standard features and assortment of available safety goodies. It’s worthwhile to check the boxes for the Safety and Secruity Group and Advanced Safety Group because they offer loads of advanced active safety equipment.

  • Model: 2019 Jeep Compass Latitude
  • Engine: 2.4-liter four-cylinder
  • Output: 180 hp / 175 lb-ft
  • Transmission: Six-speed automatic
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel drive
  • Fuel Economy: 22 City / 31 Hwy
  • Options:Safety and Security Group ($895, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, sonar rear parking sensors, rain-sensing wipers, remote start, security alarm), Advanced Safety Group ($795, adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, automatic high beams, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, auto-dimming rearview mirror)
  • Base Price: $26,340 (including the $1,495 destination fee)
  • Best Value Price: : $28,030

Performance

Jeep Compass

While it’s no powerhouse, the 2019 Jeep Compass’ standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine is adequately powerful at 180 horsepower and 175 pound-feet of torque. Traditionalists will love the Compass’ standard six-speed manual transmission – a rarity in this class – but it'll take some searching to find one.

The Compass has good on-road manners, and its independent suspension absorbs most road imperfections. For those looking for something more rugged, there's the available Compass Trailhawk that lifts the body by one inch, giving it 8.4 inches of ground clearance. This package also adds standard all-wheel drive, a nine-speed automatic transmission, a 20-to-one crawl ratio, “Rock Mode,” and more. While its nine-speed automatic transmission may sound like the latest and greatest cog swapper, it seems confused at times and does too much gear hunting.

Style

The 2019 Jeep Compass borrows its styling from the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee, and that's a good thing. Up front is where most of this trickle-down styling occurs – there's even chrome in the higher trims. Around back, the Compass pulls away from its big brother, but still boasts a modern look that's sure to satisfy most crossover buyers. Jeep fans, however, may find this back end a little too crossover-like.

Inside, the Compass features a thick-rimmed steering wheel with chunky posts, an easy-to-operate climate-control system, a seven-inch touchscreen, and optional splashes of color to add some extra style. While the rear seat offers plenty of leg and head room, its hip room is tight at just 49.2 inches. Jeep claims you can toss three adults in the Compass’ rear seat, but it'll get uncomfortable quickly. Up front, the seats feel narrow and seem to lack the padding we’d like to see for long-haul driving.

The Best and Worst Things

The Compass’ sharp styling for its class is a huge plus. And those seeking a more rugged look will appreciate what the Compass Trailhawk offers.

For a compact family crossover, that third seat is way too narrow, leaving us wondering why Jeep bothers calling this a five-seat crossover.

Right For? Wrong For?Jeep Compass

The Compass is perfect for buyers looking for a premium appearance without the premium price tag. The younger person with smaller children or no children at all would be an ideal Compass buyer.

Growing families will quickly realize just how limited the rear seats are. Buyers with families greater than four are better suited buying a different model or moving up one segment.

The Bottom Line

The 2019 Jeep Compass is sleek, stylish, and even rugged in its Trailhawk form. It also has tons of customization options, but buyer beware: the customization options add up quickly, and that rear seat will require a full-family fitting before signing any paperwork.