Jeep Patriot

#19 in Compact SUVs Overall Score: 5.5 / 10
2017 Jeep Patriot View More Photos »
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$18,040 - $25,840
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Don't overpay. Use the U.S. News Best Price Program to find the best local prices on the Patriot.
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2017 Jeep Patriot Overview

The 2017 Jeep Patriot ranks 19 out of 19 Compact SUVs.

If you want an SUV that can go four-wheeling and you’re shopping with a small budget, the 2017 Jeep Patriot is one of the most affordable off-road SUVs you can buy. It's the least ...

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SEATING


5

MPG


20-23

  CITY


23-30

  HWY

DRIVETRAIN


FWD, 4WD

HP


158-172
See full 2017 Jeep Patriot specs ยป

Pros & Cons

  • Skilled off road with available four-wheel drive
  • Rugged, easy-to-clean cabin
  • Few standard and available features 
  • Interior materials look cheap
  • Engines are sluggish and thirsty
  • Boorish optional CVT 

Notable for 2017

  • New Sport SE trim

Jeep Patriot Rankings and Research

The 2017 Jeep Patriot ranking is based on its score within the Compact SUVs category. Currently the Jeep Patriot has a score of 5.5 out of 10 which is based on our evaluation of 80 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

Scorecard

Overall: 5.5
Critics' Rating: 5.2
Performance: 5.6
Interior: 5.8
Safety: 7.0
Reliability: N/A

Rankings

2017 Jeep Patriot Pictures

2017 Jeep Patriot Review

By Sarah Shelton October 18, 2016

If you want an SUV that can go four-wheeling and you’re shopping with a small budget, the 2017 Jeep Patriot is one of the most affordable off-road SUVs you can buy. It's the least expensive model in the Jeep lineup and checks off various prerequisites required of a trail-worthy SUV – available options include four-wheel drive, skid plates, tow hooks, hill-descent control, and 17-inch all-terrain tires.

If you plan to spend a significant amount of time using your SUV to go shopping, carrying a carload of people, or commuting to and from work, other models will serve you better. According to the reviews and data that drive our rankings, the Patriot comes up short for interior comfort, back-seat space, and cargo capacity. In comparison, the top-ranking 2016 Honda CR-V offers more comfortable seating, a refined ride, and an extra 14 cubic feet of cargo space behind the back seat.

While the Patriot's $18,000 starting price is much lower than competing models, it's also a bit misleading. The base Patriot lacks comfort amenities like air conditioning and power windows. To get these, you have to step up to the third-tier Latitude trim, which costs a little over $22,000. Or you can spend $23,000 for a base 2017 Kia Sportage, which is better equipped than the Patriot. In addition to power windows and air conditioning, the Sportage comes standard with a 5-inch touch screen, steering wheel-mounted controls, and a rearview camera. The Sportage also has a higher safety score, and ranks as one of the best compact SUVs.

If you are considering the Patriot specifically for its off-roading abilities, be aware that building a Trail-Rated Patriot will run you at least $22,500. With this price increase, it's worth taking a look at the Jeep Wrangler, Jeep Cherokee, or Jeep Renegade instead. All three offer either better off-road prowess and/or amenities. 

2017 Patriot Interior

Bare Bones Interior

If you have an aversion to complicated infotainment systems, or prefer the utilitarian styling that was an integral part of early Jeep models, the Patriot will surely appeal to you. Its cabin is as pragmatic as they come: big, easy-to-read gauges, straightforward audio and climate controls, and plenty of surfaces that can be easily cleaned. The equipment list for the base Patriot is also Spartan. There's no air conditioning or power windows here. And with no standard touch screen, even Toonces the Cat can work the Patriot's simple stereo. That doesn't mean the Patriot is uncivilized: its base sound system still includes Bluetooth, an auxiliary jack, a CD player, satellite radio, and the ability to make hands-free calls.

Most of the usual comfort amenities are still available in the 2017 Patriot. Higher trim levels come with air conditioning, power windows and locks, heated seats, and leather upholstery. You can also add upgrades like automatic climate control, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a 6.5-inch touch-screen infotainment system, and a premium sound package that features two flip-down speakers in the liftgate. Adding these extras drives the price up, though, quickly negating the low cost of the Patriot's base model. The 2017 Kia Sportage, in comparison, may have a higher starting price. But its long list of standard amenities and healthier scores in every category make it a much better value.

Entry-Level Comfort

The 2017 Patriot offers a basic level of comfort for its passengers. Highlights include front seats that are supportive enough for a full day on the road, excellent visibility, and plenty of headroom all-around. However, the Patriot's classification as a compact SUV naturally means that interior space is limited. It will be a bit of a squeeze to fit three large passengers into the back seat, especially because the Patriot isn't as wide inside as some rivals. Still, there's more leg- and headroom in the back than what a Honda CR-V or Kia Sportage offers. The noise level will also cut into the quality of your ride. Wind, tire, and engine sounds are prominent, and test drivers say – even for an affordable SUV – the Patriot's cabin is noisy.

Trifling Cargo Area

With 23 cubic feet of cargo space behind the seat, the 2017 Patriot has a very small cargo hold. Among the dozen-plus models that can carry more than the Patriot are the Honda CR-V (at 37.2 cubic feet), Toyota RAV4 (38.4 cubic feet), and Nissan Rogue (with a class-leading 39.3 cubic feet).

To haul oversized loads, you can fold the 60/40 split rear seat, which lays almost completely flat. This expands total cargo capacity to 53.5 cubic feet, which is still smaller than the Jeep Wrangler's 56.5-cubic foot capacity. The Patriot's front-passenger seat also folds flat to fit long items like lumber and ladders inside. Jeep's predilection for simplicity also extends to the cargo area: There's no available power liftgate or hands-free liftgate on the Patriot.

Read more about interior »

2017 Patriot Performance

Small SUV With (Almost) Full-Sized Four-Wheeling

The leading trait that differentiates the Jeep Patriot from the myriad of other small SUVs is its off-road ability. The Patriot is more than capable of handling slippery roads in adverse weather when it's outfitted with Freedom Drive I. This option swaps out the standard front-wheel drive setup and adds four-wheel drive. In the active setting, Freedom Drive I mimics all-wheel drive by automatically engaging if it senses that the wheels are slipping.

With the Freedom Drive II four-wheel drive option, the Patriot can handle nearly the same level of off-road trails as most of its Jeep siblings. Included in this off-road package are hill-start assist and hill-descent control (both of which help maintain even speeds for more controlled crawling), protective skid plates, an engine oil cooler, and a height adjustment for the driver's seat. This setup gives the Patriot 17-inch all-terrain tires and 9.1 inches of ground clearance, but it also adds about $4,700 to the price. At that cost, Jeep loyalists can satisfy their off-roading urges and get a better overall package by opting for a Renegade or Wrangler instead.

Lackluster Power and Fuel Economy

Out of the powertrain options available in the 2017 Patriot, reviewers like the available 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission the best. The 172-horspower engine is only mildly energetic, but test drivers say it's still better than the standard 2.0-liter four cylinder. Neither one is especially quiet or refined, though. The Patriot comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission that's decent. If you want the Freedom II Off-Road package, then you are stuck with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) that exacerbates the Patriot's mediocre performance. 

Unfortunately, the Patriot's engines don't offer fuel savings in return for this less-than-stellar performance. In its standard configuration, the Patriot is rated at 23 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. The CVT lowers this to 22 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway. Adding the Freedom Drive II four-wheel drive system and the 2.4-liter engine to the CVT creates the thirstiest option, at 20 mpg city/23 mpg highway. If you're after an SUV with better fuel savings, the 2016 Honda CR-V is one of the leanest, with a rating of 26 mpg city/33 mpg highway.

Ho-Hum Handling

When assessing the Jeep Patriot on its own, test drivers say this compact SUV handles pretty well. Its steering is light, its posture is mostly composed, and the ride quality feels about as smooth as a small car. However, the Patriot’s flaws come into focus when you test it alongside competing models. While the Patriot feels harsh over rough pavement, the Honda CR-V is pleasant and poised. And where the Kia Sportage can nimbly take on a twisty road, the Patriot wavers, with unimpressive brakes and some body lean.

Read more about performance »

2017 Patriot Pricing, Options, and Trims

The starting price of $17,895 for the 2017 Jeep Patriot marks an increase of only $200 over the 2016 Patriot model and makes it one of the least expensive compact SUVs you can buy. Standard equipment includes a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, a five-speed manual transmission, and front-wheel drive. The Patriot is also available with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) or a six-speed automatic transmission. If you want to upgrade to four-wheel drive, the Patriot has two available 4x4 setups: one that’s suitable for slick or snowy roads and one that's capable of handling off-road trails.  

The Patriot is available in five different trim levels for 2017, starting with the Patriot Sport. This comes with four speakers, satellite radio, a CD player, an auxiliary jack, Bluetooth, hands-free calling, fog lights, roof rails, and 16-inch wheels. The $20,040 Sport SE adds a leather steering wheel with audio controls, a combination of cloth and vinyl seat upholstery, heated front seats, and 17-inch wheels.

Highlights of the Latitude trim ($22,395) include air conditioning, power windows, reclining rear seats, a 115-volt outlet, remote start (when outfitted with the CVT), and remote keyless entry. Jeep's top-level Patriot is the High Altitude trim. Starting at $24,975, this adds comforts like leather upholstery, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, manual lumbar adjustment for the driver's seat, and a sunroof.

Jeep is offering a 75th Anniversary Edition in 2017 to mark the brand's diamond jubilee. This commemorative model closely follows the Sport SE build sheet, adding upgraded cloth upholstery, a sunroof, and unique accents. Pricing for this special edition starts at $24,695. If you want great savings on this, or any other Patriot model, use our U.S. News Best Price Program. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Jeep deals page.

Upgrades available for the 2017 Patriot include automatic climate control, a nine-speaker Boston Acoustics sound system, a six-disc CD player, an infotainment center with a 6.5-inch touch screen and a USB port, navigation, a Wi-Fi hot spot, daytime running lights, heated exterior mirrors, and a tow hook.

See 2017 Jeep Patriot specs and trims »

2017 Patriot Safety and Reliability

Safety equipment for the 2017 Jeep Patriot is pretty basic, with side-curtain air bags, fog lights, and a rollover sensor among the standard features. A rearview camera and daytime running lights are available, but Jeep doesn't offer any driver assistance features (like blind spot monitoring or adaptive cruise control) for the Patriot.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gives the 2017 Patriot an overall rating of four out of five stars, with middling performance in front and rollover tests pulling down the Patriot's total safety score.

In comparison, the 2016 Honda CR-V has one of the highest safety scores among compact SUVs. It received the topmost safety designations from both NHTSA and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and it comes standard with a rearview camera. A full array of active safety equipment is available, including adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, emergency braking, and lane keep assist.

J.D. Power and Associates has not evaluated for the 2017 Jeep Patriot for predicted reliability. The nearly-identical 2016 model, however, received below-average ratings.

The 2017 Jeep Patriot comes with a three-year/36,000-mile limited warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about safety »

Read more about reliability »

Other SUVs to Consider

The Honda CR-V is one of the most well-rounded compact SUVs. Its first-rate attributes include spacious seats, a large cargo area, and excellent fuel economy. Because of these standout qualities (and more), we picked the CR-V as the winner of our 2016 Best Compact SUV for Families award. It was also a finalist for our 2016 Best Compact SUV for the Money, and it sits at the top of our compact SUV rankings.

The affordable starting price and upscale cabin help make the Kia Sportage a great value. It comes standard with high-grade materials, a 5-inch touch-screen infotainment system, and a rearview camera. Among its opulent add-ons are a panoramic sunroof, a Harman Kardon premium sound system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a full array of active safety features. Kia also has one of the longest warranties, covering the Sportage from bumper-to-bumper for five years or 60,000 miles and the powertrain for 10 years or 100,000 miles.

Compare the Patriot, CR-V, and Sportage in more detail »

Details: 2017 Jeep Patriot

The 2017 Jeep Patriot is a compact SUV with two rows of seats and room for five people. It comes standard with front-wheel drive, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, and a five-speed manual transmission. Two different four-wheel drive systems are available, along with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and two automatic transmission options. For 2017, the Patriot is available in five: Sport, Sport SE, Latitude, High Altitude, and a 75th Anniversary special edition.

The Patriot has not been redesigned since it was launched in 2007 and sees no significant changes for 2017. As a result, this overview includes reviews and research from 2007 through 2017 model years.

The Patriot's standard features includes a four-speaker stereo, Bluetooth, an auxiliary jack, a USB port, a CD player, satellite radio, and fog lights. Available features include power windows, air conditioning, automatic climate control, leather upholstery, a 6.5-inch touch screen, a rearview camera, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a sunroof, reclining rear seats, and a 115-volt outlet.

See 2017 Jeep Patriot specs and trims »

  • "The Jeep Patriot is an inexpensive compact crossover that offers above-average off-roading capability for what is, admittedly, a very pavement-bound segment. In other areas, such as fuel economy, interior quality, acceleration and overall refinement, the Patriot lags behind the majority of its competitors." -- Left Lane News
  • "Laying claim to being America's best-priced SUV doesn't necessarily make the 2017 Jeep Patriot the compact SUV of the year. An aging design, lackluster repair and reliability ratings and outdated audio and safety features make the Patriot a rather bare-bones prospect. However, for those seeking basic transportation at a good price with the added bonus of having light off-road credentials, the Patriot is hard to beat. Although Jeep's own Renegade is a better compact SUV in every way, the Patriot offers a bit more interior room and cargo space. And while vehicles such as the Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V and Hyundai Tucson all offer more power, better handling and more advanced features, they also cost significantly more than Jeep's admittedly less well-equipped Jeep Patriot." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "If you must have a new Jeep and you're on a shoestring budget, the 2016 Jeep Patriot will fill the bill. Otherwise, this segment is full of superior crossovers, whether at the Jeep dealership or elsewhere." -- Edmunds (2016)
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