Said to be a true global model with sales expected to commence in some 100 countries from early next year, the new Compass does away with its predecessor bloated and somewhat cutesy appearance for a more muscular and imposing stance with styling hint taken from the Grand Cherokee.
Sharing the same platform with the Fiat 500X and smaller Jeep Renegade, the Compass' underpinnings have been extensively revised though with a more rigged frame, fully independent suspension, segment-unique Koni frequency damping front-and-rear shocks, and faster electric power steering.
Up front, the US-spec Compass will only offer a single engine with a choice of three transmissions with drive either going to the front or all four wheels.
Available in four trim levels; Sport, Latitude, Limited and Trailhawk, the 2.4-litre Tigershark petrol produces 134 kW and 237 N.m of torque, with a six-speed manual standard across a range, while two-wheel drive models feature a similar ratio automatic. A ZF-sourced nine-speed auto is optional on the four-wheel drive.
A four mode Select-Terrain system (Auto, Snow, Sand and Mud) system is standard on four-wheel drive models, with a Rock Crawl mode being added on Trailhawk models. The latter also adds 17-inch wheels, Hill Decent Control, increased ride height and revised front facia, water wading depth of 483 mm, and approach and departure angles of 30 and 34 degrees respectively.
Inside, the interior now falls in line with other Jeep models with a choice of a five, seven or 8.4-inch touch screen displays, the latter two with UConnect satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, 3.5 or seven-inch Drive Information Instrument cluster and internet access.
Safety has also been rammed-up with Forward Collision Warning, Lane Sense Departure Warning, Blind Spot Monitoring, Rear Cross Traffic Assist, Rollover Mitigation and Surround View Camera System.
No confirmation as to when the Compass will arrive in South Africa has yet been made.