NEW FOR 2009:

– Refreshed interior styling
– Compass North Plus package adds 17-inch aluminum wheels, leather-wrapped wheel with audio controls, cruise control and heated front seats
– UConnect hands-free connectivity now a stand-alone option on Limited, and packaged in the available Sirius Satellite Radio Group on the North Edition
– Single-CD/MP3 stereo adds WMA capability
– Available iPod interface, MyGIG entertainment system and MyGIG with navigation
– Garage door opener and tire pressure monitor display added to Security and Cargo Convenience Group
– Exterior colours: Deep Water Blue and Light Sandstone added; Steel Blue and Light Khaki discontinued

The Jeep Compass receives a refreshed interior for 2009, including a new instrument panel, new door trim panel and centre console, soft-touch door armrest, carpeted load floor, illuminated cup holders, larger floor mats and interior chrome accents, while the flip pocket in the centre console armrest has been eliminated. There are also changes to its standard and optional features, including a new available MyGIG with navigation and an iPod interface that allows a music player to be operated using the radio buttons.

More four-door sedan than rugged SUV, it shares its platform and driveline with the Dodge Caliber. It’s available as the Sport, Canada-exclusive North Edition and as the Limited; all come standard with a 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine with five-speed manual or optional CVT, and in front-wheel drive or optional Freedom Drive I, an all-wheel system that runs in front-wheel until it senses slippage and sends torque to the rear wheels. It can also be locked into 50/50 mode. The Sport and North Editions can also be optioned with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine with CVT, in front-wheel drive only.

Features on the Sport include 17-inch aluminum wheels, floor mats, fog lamps, manual foldaway mirrors, cloth upholstery, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, CD stereo with auxiliary input, removable carpeted cargo area load floor, tire pressure warning lamp, variable intermittent wipers, and intermittent rear washer/wiper.

The North Edition adds air conditioning, front and rear assist handles, deep-tint sunscreen glass, removable and rechargeable LED flashlight, power locks with keyless entry, power mirrors, 115-volt outlet, Stain Repel fabric, reclining rear seat, height-adjustable driver’s seat, and power windows with driver’s one-touch down.

The Limited adds 18-inch aluminum wheels, Electronic Vehicle Information Centre, garage door opener, auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated leather-faced seats, Sirius satellite radio, leather-wrapped wheel with audio controls, and tire pressure monitoring display.

The only Jeep currently in the line-up without the company’s "Trail Rated" designation, the Compass has proved popular with buyers. It’s well-sized for urban areas, it’s roomy inside, and the 2.4-litre works well with either the manual or CVT transmission options. The optional four-wheel system on even the base model means buyers aren’t forced into a pricier trim line in order to get it. Should you want a more rugged vehicle without getting into a Wrangler, the Jeep Patriot also shares the Compass’ platform but has an available "Trail Rated" four-wheel system.

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