With a fresh design revealed last night, the 2017 Jeep Compass just vaulted from C-squad rental fleet car to decidedly decent looking crossover SUV. So far Jeep has been coy with details in the U.S. but our friends in Brazil already have details on dimensions and off-road angles.
Gustavo Ruffo at MotorChase was at the Compass’s Brazilian launch event, from which he tells us Fiat Chrysler Automobiles announced the SUV as “the most aerodynamic Jeep ever” with a coefficient of drag at 0.35.
For your reference, the current Wrangler (JK) apparently gets 0.4 on that scale and a Tesla Model S is 0.24.
Ruffo says FCA posted the 2017 Compass’s dimensions at 174 inches in length, 71.65 inches in width and 63.77 inches in height with a wheelbase of 103.93 inches. Cargo capacity is claimed at 14.479 cubic feet.
That puts it, as we established yesterday, between the Cherokee (182 inches long) and Renegade (167 inches long.)
Now I promised we’d talk off-road here so I won’t make you scroll any further.
With those red tow hooks in yesterday’s U.S. press photo, I was pretty confident we were looking at a Trailhawk trim option. Now that the Brazilian images have the badge clearly glued on the tailgate, there is no doubt.
For those of you who stopped paying attention to Jeep with the death of the XJ, “Trailhawk” is the name the company now gives the off-roady versions of the various car-based crossover SUVs that compose their lineup. Except for the Wrangler. That thing is legitimately off-road oriented by default, though the Rubicon is the most capable trim with a super low-range and meaty tires among other options.
For the rest of the Jeep fleet the Trailhawk treatment generally features a modest lift achieved with larger tires and possibly a suspension spacer, some low-range gearing for a little more pronounced crawling ability and a more advanced traction control system. Trailhawk vehicles also get Jeep’s top-of-the-range driver aid and luxury options.
Since off-roading is all about getting over things that aren’t flat, approach and departure angles are a good measure of how capable a car might be. MotorChase lists the 2017 Jeep Compass Trailhawk’s approach angle at 29.1º and departure angle at 33.1º with 9 inches of ground clearance. They didn’t have a breakover angle, which basically measures how steep a peak a car could clear without bottoming out.
The “regular” 2017 Compass apparently nets 28.7º approach and 31.9º departure with 8.58 inches of ground clearance.
So now that every Jeep model has a Trailhawk trim, how do they measure up against each other? Let’s check it out:
There’s some bullshit in the Grand Cherokee Trailhawk brochure about being able to hit a 36.1° approach angle “with the facia removed.” Forget that. If we’re allowed to measure without the front bumper, every car’s score would skyrocket. As for the Renegade, you can see its stubby-ness paying off in these figures.
Anyway it looks like the Compass Trailhawk will be able to keep up with your buddy’s beat up Subaru Forester no problem, so you can appease your family with a comfortable daily driver and still tell yourself you’re a badass when you totally rip down the campground driveway.
Ruffo’s report says the Brazilian market will get four Compass trims all up, a base Sport, better Latitude, nice Limited and the Trailhawk topper. Prices in Brazil are said to range from about $30,000 to $43,000, which sounds pretty steep since the top of that is what a Grand Cherokee Trailhawk lists at here in the U.S.
The other versions of the vehicle look just as tidy though. I guess we have a Mr. Chris Piscitelli to thank for this “baby Grand” design.
The Brazilian market will reportedly get two engine options: a 2.0-liter gas and a 2.0-liter turbo diesel. I think we might get the Renegade and Cherokee’s 2.4-liter gas option, and possibly the Renegade’s smaller 1.4 turbo gas as the base engine here in the United States. But now that we know GM is doing a diesel Equinox here, we might see that 2.0 turbo diesel stateside at some point.
Stay tuned for details on pricing and power in the U.S., probably in November.
Want to look a little longer? Looks like the Latitude trim got lots of love from FCA’s Brazilian media photographer: