The all-new Jeep Compass, revealed at the Los Angeles motor show, is likely to become the marque’s best-selling model when production hits its stride in the middle of next year, with global sales approaching 300,000.
The model will be built in India, Mexico, China and Brazil and sell in about 110 countries.
It replaces both the outgoing Compass and ageing Patriot and will slot into the range between the recently launched Renegade and the Cherokee. Jeep’s British-born boss, Mike Manley, said the opportunity to sell more vehicles in Europe’s booming C-segment SUV market is likely to be the key driver behind the Compass’s expected future status as Jeep’s top seller.
The model, whose styling has been modernised along the lines of the Renegade, continues with time-honoured design features such as a clamshell bonnet, muscular front wings and rear shoulders, plus a seven-bar vertical grille. It will make its European debut at the Geneva show in March and should arrive in European showrooms in mid-2017. Right-hand-drive versions will be in the UK at the beginning of 2018.
Both two and four-wheel-drive versions will be offered, and 4×4 buyers will have a choice of a standard or Active Drive Low set-up, a full-time four-wheel drive system that features a 20:1 crawler ratio.
The Compass range shares Fiat Chrysler Automobiles ‘small, wide architecture’ with its Renegade sibling and Fiat’s 500X. Power steering is electrically assisted and the suspension is independent by struts at the front and rear.
There will be four European engine options: a 2.0-litre diesel available in 140bhp and 170bhp guises (with either manual or nine-speed auto transmissions), a 1.6-litre diesel offered with two-wheel drive only, and a 1.4-litre petrol turbo with a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch ’box.