There is no shortage of fine small SUVs, or crossovers if you will, in the British market. They even make a couple of them, like Nissan Qashqai and Honda CR-V, locally. But Chrysler hopes, rather optimistically, that the 2014 Jeep Compass stands a good chance of wining a fair share of the market by offering lots of features and good value.
It certainly does get an awful lot of features. The 2014 Jeep Compass with its updated exterior, refined interior, the choice of three trim levels: Sport, Limited and the all-new North, three engines, two- or four-wheel-drive, and a new transmission, seem like everything you can possibly ask for. At least on paper.
Engines on the 2014 Jeep Compass include the efficient 2.2-litre turbo diesel engine delivering 161 bhp and 320 Nm of torque and two petrol World Engines: the 2.4-litre that produces power of 168 bhp and torque of 220 Nm and the 2.0-litre providing 154 bhp and 190 Nm of torque. Selected models get the 6F24 six-speed automatic transmission.
The Compass’ winning card is the amount of kit it offers. Standard features include: new acoustic laminated front windshield glass, body-colour exterior door handles and tailgate brow, projector fog lamps, 17-inch alloy wheels and chrome roof side rails, front-seat-mounted side airbags, advanced multistage front driver and passenger air bags, all-row side curtain airbags, front driver and passenger active head restraints, Electronic Stability Control, Electronic Roll Mitigation, Hill-start Assist, anti-lock disc brakes, manual air conditioning, power-heated fold-away exterior mirrors, illuminated keyless entry, premium cloth seats, illuminated cup holders, rear 60/40 split folding seat, fold-flat rear seat, Cruise Control and radio with CD/DVD/MP3.
But the thing about American cars, especially cheap ones, is that they are nowhere near as nice and refined to live with as their European rivals. Still, a lot of people would happily trade some refinement for better value and more kit.