Another refreshed member of the new Jeep lineup broke cover recently, as the brand has now taken the wraps off of the 2011 Jeep Compass, which gains new levels of both capability and style.
Significantly, this includes the addition of Jeep's Freedom Drive II AWD setup to the Compass' options list. The package is available on all trim levels and includes a second-gen continuously variable transaxle with a low range (CVT2L in Jeep-speak), an increased ride height, a full-size spare tire, tow hooks, fog lamps and a manual seat adjuster. But the big news here is that, when outfitted with this option package, the 2011 Compass is now officially "Trail Rated" by Jeep, with the Freedom Drive II "recommended for moderate off-road situations that include steep grades, occasional wheel lift, and rock or log climbing."
The Compass also is available with the Freedom Drive I package, a full-time, active four-wheel-drive setup that is ideal for rough weather and low-traction conditions, or in a pure front-wheel-drive configuration. Notably, the Jeep can achieve 28 mpg highway even when kitted out with AWD, and put up an EPA line of 23 mpg city/29 mpg highway as a front-wheel driver.
Buyers will notice a closer family resemblance between the new Compass and the popular 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, courtesy of an exterior that features a new hood, grille, front fenders, front and rear fascias, and a body-color rear spoiler, along with a subtle use of new brightwork accents. There's more protective cladding, too, to allow drivers to take full advantage of the Compass' new off-road capabilities.
On the inside, the Compass leverages the brand's growing reputation for high-quality interiors. Showcased here are a new center armrest, more soft-touch materials, new cloth seating surfaces with premium cloth buckets up front, sophisticated touches like backlit door switches, door locks, and window and power-mirror controls, and Jeep's new multifunction steering wheel. The latter includes switchgear for the Compass' audio system, cruise control, hands-free phone functionality and more.
'With the new 2011 Jeep Compass, we've applied the premium design cues of our award-winning new Grand Cherokee,'? said Mike Manley, president and CEO of Jeep. 'Combined with new interior appointments, and refinements to the suspension and steering systems, Jeep Compass provides consumers the ultimate combination of styling, capability, fuel economy, efficiency, safety and value in the important compact-SUV segment.'?
The 2011 Jeep Compass is slated to go on sale this year; note that pricing information was not available at press time.