in 2010 Affordable Compact SUVs

Avg. Price Paid: $12,453 - $16,846
Original MSRP: $18,720 - $25,135
MPG: 23 City / 28 Hwy
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2010 Jeep Compass Interior

This interior review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

While in past years the Compass' cabin almost universally failed to impress reviewers, design and quality modifications for 2009 helped bring it on par with some competitors, though certainly not class leaders. Another plus: Thanks to better sound deadening, road noise is no longer as intrusive. Most reviewers approve of the cabin's front-seat comfort, but are disappointed in cargo capacity.

  • "Despite some improvements in materials quality last year, the Compass is still well behind the curve in terms of plastics and overall interior design. There's just nothing here to make buyers feel as if they got a special vehicle for their hard-earned money." -- Edmunds
  • "Though I had no qualms with the technological advancements of the outgoing Compass' engine range, one complaint I did have was with noise. Jeep's engineers worked on improving the sound deadening behind the new dash and around the floor panels in the '09 model to make the vehicle quieter. Indeed, under full throttle this tester's 2.4-liter inline-four seemed more refined than the one I drove last season." -- Automobile.com
  • "Cabin decor is in step with class competitors, with decent plastics, soft-touch surfaces, and a reasonably solid feel." -- Consumer Guide


The majority of reviewers find the Compass' front seats especially comfortable and roomy. The rear seats, on the other hand, are not as inviting -- a common complaint in the compact SUV class. In Limited models, the rear seats recline and leather upholstery is standard. For more comfortable rear seats, consider the Suzuki Grand Vitara or Chevrolet Equinox. The Grand Vitara costs around the same as the Compass, while the Equinox costs a few thousand dollars more but also provides a higher quality interior.

  • "The tight back seat feels claustrophobic." -- Arizona Republic
  • "The seats are high for good visibility, and getting in and out is easy." -- Kansas City Star
  • "Backseat passengers praised the Compass' rear leg room, but complained that the seats were uncomfortable." -- CNET
  • "Generous [front] headroom. The seats are mounted higher in Compass than in Caliber, expanding ample legroom. The driver seat is height adjustable on most versions, but it still didn't create ideal positioning for all our testers." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Seats are somewhat less than comfortable, and the Compass' fixed rear head restraints and wide rear roof pillars obstruct rear visibility." -- Edmunds

Interior Features

With a mild interior redesign in 2009, the Jeep Compass' cabin has come a long way. Still, quality-wise, it can't measure up to top competitors. For higher quality, consider the similarly priced Suzuki Grand Vitara. Reviewers say its interior doesn't look or feel cheap.

The Jeep's features list is also rather sparse. The base Sport model, which offers few frills, comes standard with manual door locks and windows as well as a tilt steering column. The Limited model (which costs about $5,000 more) adds power windows and door locks, Sirius satellite radio, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with mounted audio controls and remote keyless entry. Automatic climate control is a new option for 2010.

  • "The interior plastics have a Third World appearance, although they fit together well." -- USA Today
  • "The Compass has sported a slightly nicer interior design since '09, but this is still an unmistakably budget-minded cabin. The switchgear feels flimsy, the plastics are hard and rough and the steering wheel probably will not feel comfortable in your hands." -- Edmunds
  • "Though the HVAC controls and the steering wheel remain the same, Jeep's designers came up with a brand new dashboard and door panel design that not only represent an improvement in appearance, but in quality as well. Nearly all of the materials used remain hard plastic, but they're of a better grade and offer reduced sheen." -- Automobile.com
  • "The Compass' driver will find himself in a cabin that is composed of materials that feel well below the crossover's $19,495 base price, which is saying a lot. Cheap plastics and coarse fabric abound and every surface feels hollow to the touch." -- CNET
  • "The gauges are easy to read. Large, simple audio and climate controls are within easy reach, though the manual-transmission shift lever can block access to climate dials. Available rear-facing fold-down speakers in the liftgate are a picnic plus." -- Consumer Guide


A few reviewers aren't too pleased with the cargo capacity inside the Compass, but the majority praises the cargo area's vinyl plastic floor. With all seats in use, it provides 22.7 cubic feet of space, which expands to 53.6 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down.

Those in need of more cargo capacity should check out similarly priced the Suzuki Grand Vitara which provides 67.3 cubic feet with all seats folded down. The more expensive Chevrolet Equinox is another good option that provides 63.7 cubic feet. The Compass allows for a bit more space in Limited models, which come with a flat-folding front passenger seatback that expands cargo space to 60.7 cubic feet. A full-length floor console with sliding armrest is standard on all models.

  • "The cabin is roomy and full of storage cubbies..." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Open hatch barely clears the head of six-footers. Interior storage is OK, but the door map pockets are too small to be really useful." -- Consumer Guide
  • "And while the Compass' height and ground clearance are on par with those of small crossover SUVs (hence its official SUV classification), its hauling ability is more like the Caliber's -- the Compass has the least maximum cargo space of any vehicle in its class." -- Edmunds

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