It’s uncommon for new or updated Jeeps to be unveiled in Europe ahead of the US, but today counts as one of those days when Europe takes the lead. The refreshed Jeep Compass is just across the pond and the changes are quite substantial.
Most of the attention went to the interior of the Compass, but we’ll note that the front also received some attention. There is a larger grille area with a mesh design in the front bumper. It gets redesigned headlights and fog lights, and the seven-louvre grille is lightly massaged. You’ll notice the lack of tow bars on this Euro-spec Trailhawk – don’t worry, they’ll be back in the US for sure. Also, don’t assume these photos are an example of an exact design for the American compass. Jeep could very well prepare a compass with the taste of the USA in mind. Just don’t expect it to be all that different from what you see here.
One area where we can expect great similarities between the two is interior design. Jeep has given the Compass a totally new look inside, and it looks vastly improved over the current car. New, modern technology is central. European buyers will have the choice between an 8.4-inch or 10.1-inch touchscreen, and both will use the new Uconnect 5 software. Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto participate, as does a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster. It’s reminiscent of the new cluster in the upcoming Grand Cherokee L, which is starting to look like a preview of the upcoming Jeeps.
The new interior design seems a lot more premium than today’s cheap-looking Compass (see the slider comparison above). It has beautiful stitching, glossy surfaces, metal-look knobs and buttons. Where everything looked upright and fairly straightforward, the interior of the new Compass is based on broad, horizontal lines and is much more elegant than we are used to from affordable Jeeps. It’s more reminiscent of the Grand Wagoneer and Grand Cherokee L. We’re quite pleased with the brown and beige option – let’s hope the interior makes it to the US.
In addition, Jeep highlights new driver assistance systems that come to the compass. Most intriguing is a new Highway Assist that combines adaptive cruise control with an advanced lane centering system to make long highway journeys less stressful. If something like Alfa’s highway assistant works, we’ll be happy.
The powertrain story is still in the air. Europe is getting the sweet plug-in hybrid 4xe, but Jeep has not yet committed to offering that powertrain in the US. The current 2.4-liter four-cylinder seems like a lock to us, but we can hope that Jeep ultimately considers us worthy enough for the PHEV.
There is still no date for a Jeep Compass unveiling in the US in 2022, but Car and Driver has learned from Jeep that full details will disappear in a few months.