Most people think of Jeeps as tough off-road vehicles that love to get muddy, but when the Jeep Compass debuted for 2007, it wasn't like other Jeeps. Instead, it was a car-based design built for the majority of small-SUV buyers who wanted a fuel-efficient runabout that was easy to drive around suburbia.
The Compass features most notably rock-bottom pricing and above-average off-road ability when equipped with a few special options. The Jeep Compass is an example of a budget crossover that tries to check every box when it comes to versatility while keeping the bottom line low. Even so, the Jeep Compass faces stiff competition among today's compact, car-based SUVs. Its low base price may be compelling at a glance, but we haven't been impressed by its budget interior furnishings, modest cargo capacity and general lack of refinement. If you want a small Jeep, the Cherokee is a better bet.