Jeep Patriot Interior
Reviewers find the 2008 Jeep Patriot's five-seat interior roomy, but don't give it much praise in other areas. Points of criticism are the low-grade interior materials, poor rear seating comfort and a meager list of standard features on the base model.
Interior pluses are the impressive cargo capacity (especially with the rear seat folded down) and a list of innovative options including flip-down liftgate speakers.
Though the four-door, five-seat Patriot is one of Jeep's smallest models, it doesn't skimp on space. "Despite its small size, the Jeep Patriot seats five comfortably," says Popular Mechanics. Autobytel also praises, "Occupants are treated to tons of head, leg, and foot room, and when the ride in question is a Limited version, a height-adjustable driver's seat provides an extra level of comfort."
Comfort, however, is not uniform throughout the cabin. While reviewers are pleased with the front seats, they slam the 60/40 folding rear bench seat. A Car Place notes, "There's plenty of room in the back, but the rear seats are amazingly uncomfortable, with everyone we put in back panning them, from child to adult; it's a combination of unusual firmness and unusual contours." Autobytel adds: "The [rear] bottom cushion must have been shaped by a steamroller. To make things worse, the flat seat bottom is too short and offers little thigh support. The backrest is as curvy as a plank, and the fold-down center armrest oops, there isn't one."
Autobytel further notes that the rear doors don't open wide enough, and passengers "need to step over the intruding wheel well when entering, and once they get inside, they've got to position their feet between ugly and intrusive front seat brackets." For extra comfort, Limited models come standard with a rear reclining seatback.
While they hate the rear seats, reviewers delight in some of the front-seat features, which include a sliding front center armrest that, according to Autobytel, "allows the driver to perfectly position a resting arm within reach of the shift knob." In addition, reviewers praise visibility all-around, and Cars.com notes that "smaller drivers said they were comfortable with the fit; I was too, at 6 feet tall." Popular Mechanics heaps on the most praise, calling the seats "some of the best we've experienced in an SUV."
Reviewers are somewhat disappointed in the Patriot's number of standard features. Autobytel cautions, "There's a reason the Patriot Sport starts at less than $15,000: A lot of typically standard features are reserved for the options list." On that note, buyers should keep in mind that power windows, power doors and even air-conditioning do not come standard on the base model.
Interior quality is also a major complaint, with Car and Driver griping: "Confoundingly awful interior materials and a boxy dashboard with more folds and seams than a flock of origami swans make the Patriot feel cheap, cheap, cheap. The only soft-touch anything is the headliner." The Car Connection echoes, "It's not that Patriot's cabin isn't reasonably attractive, but there's cheapness in the overall choice of materials: too much hard plastic, for one thing, and when you rap your knuckles on the instrument panel, you hear a hollow echo that doesn't sound quite solid enough."
The standard features on the base Sport model include front vinyl tech bucket seats, a rear 60/40 folding seat, an Ultra Floor vinyl load floor, a sliding front armrest with flip pocket for cell phone/MP3, a liftgate door with fixed glass, outside temperature display in odometer, rear seat heat ducts, manual locks and windows, four speakers and an AM/FM stereo with CD player and auxiliary input jack. To gain additional features, buyers can add the Power Equipment Group option, which includes illuminated entry, power locks, power foldaway mirrors, remote keyless entry and power windows. Air-conditioning is available as a separate option.
The Limited model adds such conveniences as air-conditioning, leather-trimmed bucket seats, heated front seats, rear 60/40 reclining and folding seatbacks, a height-adjustable driver's seat, power windows and locks, power foldaway mirrors, deep-tint sunscreen glass, a front-passenger fold-flat seatback, remote keyless entry, illuminated entry and cruise control.
Stereo and Entertainment
The Patriot comes standard with an AM/FM stereo with CD player and auxiliary input jack; an in-dash six-disc CD/MP3 player is an option. For those who want to upgrade the sound system even more, a Premium Sound System package is available on either the Sport or Limited model. The Boston Acoustics 458-watt system boasts nine speakers, including a subwoofer and two flip-down liftgate speakers.
Reviewers like the liftgate speakers -- perfect for camping or tailgate parties -- which Kelley Blue Book says, "Outdoorsy Jeep types will find ... an especially alluring option." SIRIUS satellite digital radio is also available on the Limited model only and includes one year of complimentary service.
An especially useful option available only on the Limited model is UConnect Hands-Free Communication, a voice-activated system that uses a small control pad, microphone and speaker integrated into the rearview mirror. RockCrawler.com says this feature is "awesome. You don't even have to take your phone out of your pocket. It automatically pairs with the Jeep and if the phone rings, the stereo turns off the music and you hear the phone through the speakers. Way cool."
Another useful feature that comes standard is a light in the cargo area that can be removed and used as a flashlight.
The Jeep Patriot may be a relatively small SUV, but it offers an impressive amount of cargo space, according to most reviewers -- 23 cubic feet with the rear seats up, and 54.2 cubic feet with the rear seats folded flat. AutoWeek says this makes room for "an eight-foot ladder or a load of lumber, not to mention skis." RockCrawler.com also reports: "Cargo capacity is awesome for a ute this size. The rear seats fold almost completely flat and the front passenger seat does, as well, allowing you to carry 8 feet lumber on the passenger side!" A cool standard feature is the Patriot's UltrafloorTM, a washable and removable vinyl load floor for the cargo area with a load capacity of 250 pounds.
Though they are impressed with cargo space, reviewers aren't nearly as enthusiastic about cabin storage. Consumer Guide points out that "door map pockets are tiny," and Edmunds concludes that "storage space is unremarkable." The Car Connection, however, is more pleased, commenting, "Up front, there's a good bit of storage space, even a right-sized cellphone slot in the center console." Notable interior storage includes a large center console between the front seats with space for change and two cup holders, as well as a cubby hole above the glove box.