It’s not often that new or updated Jeeps are revealed in Europe before the U.S., but count today as one of those days where Europe takes the leading role. The refreshed Jeep Compass is out across the pond, and the changes are rather substantial.
Most of the focus went to the Compass’ interior, but we’ll note that the front end received some attention, too. There’s a larger grille area with a mesh design in the front bumper. It gets redesigned headlights and fog lights, plus the seven-slat grille is massaged ever so slightly. You’ll notice the lack of tow hooks on this Euro-spec Trailhawk — don’t fret, those will surely be back in the U.S. Also, don’t assume these photos preview an exact design for the American Compass. Jeep could very well be prepping a Compass with U.S. tastes in mind. Just don’t expect it to be a whole lot different than what you’re seeing here.
One area where we can expect great similarity between the two is interior design. Jeep gave the Compass a wholesale rethink inside, and it looks greatly improved over the current car. New, modern tech takes center stage. European buyers will have the choice between an 8.4-inch or 10.1-inch touchscreen, and both will be running the new Uconnect 5 software. Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto are along for the ride, and so is a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster. It reminds of the new cluster found in the upcoming Grand Cherokee L, which is starting to look like a preview of Jeeps to come.
The new interior design appears far more premium than the cheap-looking Compass of today (see the slider comparison above). It features nice stitching, glossy surfaces, metal-look buttons and knobs. Where everything looked upright and rather unsophisticated before, the new Compass’ interior is based on wide, horizontal lines and is far more elegant than we’ve come to expect from affordable Jeeps. It’s more reminiscent of the Grand Wagoneer and Grand Cherokee L. We’re quite taken by the brown and beige option — let’s just hope that interior makes it to the U.S.
Beyond that, Jeep highlights new driver assistance systems coming to the Compass. The most intriguing is a new Highway Assist that combines adaptive cruise control with an advanced lane centering system to make long highway slogs less stressful. If it works anything like Alfa’s highway assist, we’ll be pleased.
The powertrain story is still up in the air. Europe gets the sweet plug-in hybrid 4xe, but Jeep hasn’t committed to offering that powertrain in the U.S. yet. The current 2.4-liter four-cylinder seems like a lock for us, but we can hope Jeep eventually deems us worthy enough for the PHEV.