New Delhi: With so many other luxury SUVs being launched, the question is, should you consider the Jeep Compass now? The Compass is a familiar name that has existed for some time, but the update, it came in 2021, took it further towards a more premium SUV – a fairly well-timed move with lots of new products coming later. But to see if the Jeep Compass would still be on your list of premium SUVs to buy, we lived with the fully loaded 4×4 diesel-powered model for a considerable amount of time during our New Year’s break.
New Year’s break means time off, but the last two weeks of the year have actually been a lot of work for me to fix my room, which meant several trips to get furniture and other new stuff. That’s where the Jeep Compass came from in India. The biggest plus of the Jeep Compass, I think, is the fact that it is not huge.
In fact, it is more of a large compact SUV rather than a full-size SUV, which meant that I could take it through narrow roads and dense traffic areas. I think many of the big SUVs are only suitable for more open roads but with the compass I took it everywhere. It also helps that I rather liked driving the Compass more and did not feel like taking a small car which is due to its tough suspension along with how the SUV feels to drive.
There is one big highlight with the Compass and it is with its ride quality that helps it go over potholes, speed switches with ease and in the city, its suspension plus the compact size is what makes it stand out. The steering is also not too heavy and not too light but still has a proper SUV feel. You also sit high and thus have a commanding view of the road.
The compass I drove was a diesel and the one to go for, a 2.0 l 170 hp / 350 Nm unit with a 9-speed automatic. Paddle Shifters are not available but I really have not missed them in town with a decent, albeit slightly uncomplicated response from the gearbox. In the city there was a small amount of lag but the overall power supply was smooth. You can hear the diesel because it has the typical diesel sound that filters in. But apart from that, the Compass diesel gave me 10-11 kmpl in town, which was pretty decent considering the stop traffic I mostly used the car in.
The days when Compass was used in the city also highlighted the premium sound system and the rather stylish interior. The car I had was the top model “S” which costs Rs 30 lakh and yes, the cabin feels that way when it comes to being premium. The brand new interior is much better than the previous one and is one of the best cabins with its dashboard in several layers, soft materials, leather inserts and chrome etc.
Even the doors feel heavy and closed with a reassuring thump of a more expensive SUV. Another change is the equipment list and I found particular use for the fantastic 360-degree camera and the dual electric seats with even ventilation. Of course, there are other features such as connected car technology, panoramic sunroof, a digital instrument cluster and much more. You can not ask for more. But you think the compass needs more space. While I praised the Compass for its compact size, the rear seats are a bit small and lack the space that a similarly priced SUV provides – as I said, it is comfortable enough for four passengers in total.
With the new year celebrated, I took the compass on a car ride outdoors on the first day of the year, which showed why it is important to have a 4×4 in many places. The terrain ability of the Compass is what gives it an advantage together with its various settings to adapt to conditions such as snow / mud / sand. This means that Compass goes to places that other premium SUVs would not normally go without a 4×4. Although this model is not the more off-road-focused Trailhawk, the Compass will still impress you with its off-road capability and again, its compact size will also come in handy here.
It sums up in many ways why you should still consider one because the Compass with 4×4 provides off-road capability, a first-class SUV experience and toughness in one package. Of course, it can seem expensive at Rs 30 lakh, but it does a little more than other luxury SUVs.
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