The wife and I have been considering finally trading in the ol' '97 Dodge Neon (DOHC) on a new(er) vehicle. Our other car is an '02 300M so we are thinking it would be nice to have something with AWD/4WD, especially considering where we live. The other vehicle in consideration was a Caliber, but we are really leaning towards something with 4WD.
We still need to go down to the dealership and do some test driving, but at the moment I'm leaning towards the Patriot while the wife is leaning towards the Compass...I like the classic Jeep look while she likes the more rounded design of the Compass.
That aside, I was hoping to get some owners opinions on a few things:
1) Stick or CVT? Somewhat leaning towards the stick just because of the things I've heard about these new CVTs. How is the CVT in the Pat/Comp? I know some cars with CVT tend to sound a bit funny.
Because of the syncro problems with the 5 speed the CVT appears to be more trouble free. Hopefully it won't be a future issue since Jeep is aware of the problem. The CVT sounds
funny because they work off of optimizing the gear ratio and let the engine wind out. These little 4 bangers don't make a lot of low end torque, they work off of rpm. You get used to it.
2) Any options you would consider a must or must not? Obviously we want the 4WD, and if we go stick there will be no FD2. I'm thinking we'd end up with one of the North models (Canadian only I believe), basically the model between the basic and the limited. Would probably want a trailer tow package, just so its ready.
The trailer tow package will give you some extra cooling capacity and is much cheaper to have it come from the factory than to add it later. Get the BA sound system, you won't be sorry!
3) Compass or Patriot? Ignoring styling, is there any advantages to one or the other. From what I know, they are basically the same vehicle.
They are basically the same. The different springs and struts give each a slightly different ride and handling, not bad
The Compass could be discontinued next year if that's of interest to you. It's not Jeep looking enough for some people but it seems that the average mpg is very slightly higher on the Compass maybe due to CoD but very minor.
The Patriot has had problems with a flapping hood at 60+ mph and more prone to a leaking roof. These issues may have been fixed by now.
4) I know this is a Jeep forum, but if you were going to look at other vehicles in the same category what would you consider? I thought maybe KIA or Hyundai would have a cheaper offering, but it looks like even their small SUVs are now priced higher then the Jeeps.
I looked at the Santa Fe, Tucson, Rav 4 and many others a couple of years ago. The Compass was much less expensive with more cool stuff like ESP and all the bells and whistles than the others.
5) If we were to look at used vehicles, is there anything to be worried about in the '07s or '08s?
Check out the steering and linkage thoroughly and look for roof leaks and the flapping hood on the Patriot (different hood hinges were the fix for that).
LOVE MY COMPASS!
6) Might think of more questions later, but if there is anything else you want to comment on just post away...or link me to some good threads. If you live in Manitoba, have you seen any good deals or found any dealers easier to deal with?
7) Anyone want to sell me a mint condition Pat/Comp for a good price?
Not mint, not original and not for sale!