The Worst Compact SUV to Buy According to Car and Driver Got a Makeover

Everyone wants a compact and the market couldn’t be hotter. These SUVs, from the Honda CR-V to the Toyota RAV4 and the Mitsubishi Outlander, are some of the most popular SUVs today. But not all compact SUVs can be top-notch SUVs. What is, according to Car and Driver experts, the worst of 2022?

The 2022 Jeep Compass scored the lowest

The 2022 Jeep Compass SUV in red | Jeeps

Of the 17 compact SUVs rated for 2022, the surprising last vehicle was the 2022. The Compass looks as good as the much more expensive Cherokee, but the base 2022 Compass was, well, uninspired. Its 180-horsepower base engine and sluggish six-speed automatic transmission, mated to front-wheel drive, fell short of Jeep’s promise of a racing SUV. That lackluster engine was the magazine’s main complaint (but it’s gone for 2023).


The 2023 version makes the Jeep Compass a better car

Jeep Compass 2023 interior
The interior of the 2023 Jeep Compass | Jeeps

of the Compass should address many of the complaints of Car and Driver. While the Jeep Compass saw a redesign in 2022, for 2023 Jeep has added even more. All new Jeep Compass SUVs have a new 200-horsepower engine and standard all-wheel drive. Plus, a new eight-speed transmission should help keep that new engine purring in all the right places.

Jeep has also added more to the Compass’s suite of driver safety aids, which include adaptive cruise control and full-speed forward collision warning with active braking.

Is the Jeep Compass a real 4×4?

2023 Jeep Compass Trailhawk in Silver in the Woods
2023 Jeep Compass Trailhawk | Jeeps

The Compass has two all-wheel drive systems that are 4×4 systems, but they’re not like the ones in your Wrangler. While the Wrangler and other Jeeps have transfer cases and tough gears, the Compass doesn’t. Instead, the Active Drive is more of an all-weather four-wheel drive system. The new Trailhawk version, however, gets a unique system that provides a low-range crawl ratio (like a Wrangler), which can help in off-road situations.

The new 2023 Jeep Compass also has a new feature that should also help save fuel: It can disconnect the rear wheels, essentially making it a fuel-guzzling front-wheel drive SUV until you need 4×4.

The new 2023 Jeep Compass is available in several new special editions

Help!  I can't find a new SUV for sale.

The Compass is available in five finishes, Sport, Latitude, Latitude LUX, Limited and Trail Rated Trailhawk. Stellantis, the parent company of Jeep, has partnered with the (RED) campaign and helps fund health programs. Comes with red mirrors, different 19 inch rims and unique badging. The Attitude package is the new darkened version that gets gloss black badges and wheels, and black cloth and vinyl seats. The Trailhawk continues to be the top-of-the-line Compass.

While the Compass may not have Cherokee or Wrangler levels of off-road prowess, it also doesn’t have the prices of those SUVs even with standard all-wheel drive. The base Sport trim starts at $27,285, while the High Altitude with everything added starts at $37,585. The Trailhawk starts at $35,105.

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