The coming of “adventure season” is particularly exciting for us here at Landmark Dodge of Morrow, where the Jeep lineup stands poised to conquer trails, canyons, and routine everyday driving! The 2023 edition was the lucky recipient of a well-placed bundle of new equipment to help with everything from the spur-of-the-moment stream crossing to usual urban elements. There’s a brand-new turbocharged engine, and several improvements to the interior that made the Herald Extra’s week spent testing it.
Starting things out with an appetite for the untamed wild, the team set out to thoroughly test the Trailhawk trim level. This adds the Active Drive Low 4x4 system, allowing for an amazingly precise 20-1 crawl ratio which will greatly aid you in the quest to drive far beyond the confines of pavement. The team had to contend with a dose of late winter during their test drive, and first remarked that they were pleased with the “real teeth” and extra push of power the Compass offered up.
The Trailhawk also boasts the drive mode choices that it needed to keep up with the best of them, but it’s not just a move out of necessity: the Auto, Snow, Sand/Mud, and Rock modes made for a fitting and thorough conquest of the group’s attempt at some off-road trails in the Wasatch Mountains. The Snow mode did a fantastic job of tackling the fresh 2 inches of powder that had fallen the night before, and after climbing inside the group was immediately impressed with the new 10.1-inch Uconnect touchscreen display.
This upgraded screen offers access to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay with an easy-to-use interface. Upgrading to the Trailhawk Elite group boosts the screen to 10.25 inches, an appreciated step up that would be fully appreciated by anyone on the go. There are other great features onboard the Compass that are ideal for busy families getting from A to B: heated and cooled seats up front, remote start, and a power foot-activated tailgate all are full-on productivity-boosting and convenient. There are also new wheel designs on the Sport and Latitude trims, and automatic high-beam headlights are standard on the Latitude trim and up.
The suspension has been completely retuned as well, enhancing its capability to firmly do battle with the likes of competition such as the Dodge Hornet, Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, and others. Fuel economy has also improved, with the EPA stats situated at 24/32 mpg city/highway, and the driving range is up to 365 miles from last year’s 338. Standard equipment for every Compass now includes automatic LED headlights, an electric parking brake, and air conditioning vents for second-row passengers. The base-level infotainment system outshines entry-level expectations by providing six speaker-sound, 3 USB ports, and two 12-volt outlets.
Jeep has always been held in such high regard for just how customizable each model is, and there are plenty of awesome additions you can opt for this year. There’s the ingenious hand-free powered liftgate, rain-sensing wipers, LED projector headlights, and remote start. The Latitude Lux trim was the favorite of the Motor Trend crew, adding the upper-end features of 18-inch alloy wheels and leather seats while still in the center of the lineup. Perfect for the busy recent graduate or new family that is planning a few wilderness trips as time allows, the Compass also provides safekeeping in the forms of a rear seat reminder system and drowsy driver monitor.