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Jeep Compass Problems and Solutions

tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
edited October 2018 in Jeep
Got problems? Got solutions? Discuss them here!

Who will have the distinction of posting the first problem here? ;)


  • fzr1000fzr1000 Posts: 9
    Here are the list of problems with the Compass:

    -Drive Train
    -Exterior styling

    Here are the solutions

    Suspension: Change it to straight axles front and rear, at least the rear.

    Drive Train: Add front, center, and rear lockers, add a low range transfer case. Add a 4 wheel drive system, instead of the current All Wheel drive system.

    Chassis: Put it on a ladder frame chassis, or use something similar to the Cherokee XJ

    Engine: Go back to the 4.0L I6 to have torque Throughout the RPM band.

    Exterior styling: Fire the woman, or feminine male that designed the exterior and place a Wrangler body on it complete with a removeable top and add some snatch blocks.

    Hope this helps ;)
  • Judging by your list things you think are wrong with the new Compass,I would assume your a design engineer for another auto maker. Correct?

    Your degree in advanced auto design is probably from MIT. You are makeing these recomendations on line so you will be noticed by Jeep and offered a the job of completely reworking a new vehicle that hasen't even been on the road yet.

    They very well may completely rework a new design before it's been introduced to the public in the MIT classrooms, but it doesn't happen in the real world.

    I suggest you start your campaign for a position in the Jeep design department by reworking a proven flop. May I suggest the YUGO.

    Come back in a few weeks with some suggestions as to how to make the YUGO one of the best small cars on American's roads and I'll give you a job redesigning the horses on my ranch!

    It's been a pretty good design for 1000's of years. The horse was designed by a guy named GOD. But I bet you could do better!

    CK :)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Are you thus suggesting that camels are the Yugos of the ungulate world? ;)
  • Actually the camel is one of the best designed animals in the world. I bet even a MIT grad would not want to try to redesign that animal. It may be as ugly as the Yugo, but it's performance figures are fantastic. It's performance figures are actually better than a Jeep or Land Rover in the desert.

    I would actually say the Camel (also used right here in Montana) is the Lexus of the desert!

    You have to fit the vehicle to the task. Maybe if fzr1000 had figured out the Compasss was not designed just for him, but rather for the general masses (women included) he would have thought twice about redesigning it.

    If you applied all his suggestions to the YUGO, he might be driving one of those.

    CK ;)

    You probably don't remember the Camel Trucking company.

    They had 1000,s of truck on the highways in the 50's and 60,s. Their slogan (painted on the side of each truck)


    A little humor goes a long way in this fast pace world.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    That company is still around but there's nothing about their slogan on their web site. And yeah, I'm old enough to remember them, but barely. :shades:
  • I guess they have outlived the slogan. Too tame for the new younger generation!

    CK :)
  • You know what, CK, you are right. They should also replace the steering wheel with an electronic mouse, just like computers. We all know that steering wheels are old technology, heck they have been around since automobiles were invented, might as well change it. ;)
  • If all the above changes would happen.....wouldn't it just become a mini Wrangler? That's NOT what Jeep wanted.
  • You mean that's not what DAIMLER-CHRYSLER i.e. Dodge wanted.
  • I stand corrected....sorry I am still from the "old" school.
  • Actually your getting warm. In 40 or 50 years there will be no more steering wheels. Most of the research is being done with control sticks rather than steering wheels, gas and break pedals. Much like the aviation industry is already doing. Most new commercial jets of today no longer have control yokes. They are all coming out with side sticks about 5" long. (fly by wire) so your mouse idea is right on!

    So see, anyone can be right once in a while. Even if they don't know they are. :)
  • Oh, and by the way, Clarkkent, Jeep should also put their badge on the Stratus, 300c, and Charger. That way they can really expand their line. I mean, the Compass is a Caliber with no Jeep roots, so why not put Jeep badges on the whole Dodge model line? Isn't that what Dodge wants to do anyways, whore out the Jeep name to anything and everything so they can sell stuff, right? How about if Daimler-Chrysler puts Mercedes badges on the Wrangler? That would be great, then people who wouldn't normally buy a Mercedes would buy Mercedes Wranglers, they could call it the W class. I'm telling you, there's a whole world of suckers out there that will buy anything based on the name. I guess Dodge already figured that one out by putting Jeep badges on the Compass/Caliber.
  • The Compass is a Caliber? The Compass has an 8.1 inch Ground Clearance! Try going on the dirt roads with a Caliber. And, look at the horsepower of both. 172 vs. 148! They may be cousins but they are not twins.
  • I bought a Compass Sport with the 2.4L engine back in early Sept. I have a little over 3400 miles on it. Something that bugs me is a vibration or surging in the engine. At first I thought it was a glitch in the transmission because it always seemed to occur at about 20-25 mph with the engine turning about 2200 rpm.

    Then, on a hunch, I tried bringing the rpm up to 2200 while parked in the driveway. Sure enough, as I slowly creeped into the 2000 rpm range I felt the familiar shake. It can be felt felt through the steering wheel, seat of the pants, gear lever and to just about anyone sitting in the car.

    Everything else runs great. I've averaged 24 mpg thus far and overall am very pleased with the Compass.

    So my question is: Has anyone else encountered this engine surging/vibration/shake problem? If so, what was the cause and fix? I'd like to be forwarned/forearmed before I head to the dealer. Thanks! :confuse:
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    I get MOTOR WEEK, and this weeks edition was a review of the Compass. There was NOTHING that was good said about the COMPASS. I like the looks of the COMPASS much better than the Caliber. I did drive a Caliber. The blind spots were much worse than any vehicle I have driven in 45 years. The inside was mainly hard plastic. The transmission wanted to stay at very high rpm's. The engine was not near as smooth as the Neon 2. engine, nor had the get up and go like the Neon with the 4 speed automatic.
    Now here is a huge reason I did not buy a Compass a 2006 Liberty with a sticker price of $24,615. we got for $18,650. and the Compass that had as close to what the Liberty had was nearly $23,700. DCX has the price set so later in the year they can give a big rebate. But that did not help for now!
    I think DCX and the JEEP, are in serious trouble, as they are just really making one really hot vehicle, that's the Unlimited Wrangler. Many magizines say the quality of the KIA and Hundi are better than the Caliber and the Compass. Does anyone believe that the Compass has some hidden value that people just don't see?

  • Actually, he is describing the Jeep XJ (Cherokee). Sounds like a hard-core off-roader. XJ was a great Jeep. This is not a replacement, nor is it intended to be.
  • neely2005neely2005 Posts: 70
    The Ground Clearance on a Caliber is 7.6 Inches so that's not bad.
    As to the horsepower the Caliber R/T AWD & Caliber R/T FWD both have 172 horsepower coming from the same 2.4L engine that is in the Compass.
    There is also a 158 horsepower engine in addition to the 148 horsepower engine - only the Caliber SE has 148 horsepower and you won't find many of those.
    Not to mention that they share the same CVT Transmission...
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Anyone here using stick-on mirrors (or other solutions) to improve the vision out the back?

    Jeep Compass Limited: Blind Spot Design (Long-Term Road Tests)

  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    Steve: Personally the blind spot does not really bother my wife or me. We use more caution when backing up. The back window has not much to see with the rear seats up, but when down the view is much better.

    Buy the way guess how much the little dark port window on the back side cost? We were weed eating and a rock hit the window. The window is $485. US dollars plus $60. to install it. DEALER ITEM ONLY !!!!! ouch. glad we had $100. deductable ins. Took 2 weeks to get it.

  • hortaghortag Posts: 12
    So...yes the blind spots on the Jeep are a son of a gun. My 6 year old Daughter wanted to run up to the rear brake light and tap it, right when I was trying to pull out of my drive way. I saw her at the last second, but I still have "What if?" nightmares! That back up alert system should be standard on all SUV's but especially this one because of its huge blind spots.

    That said, the only other problem I have with the Jeep, is the lack of an auxiliary input port on the in dash Navi/Radio. I tried this neat looking after market set up that gives you another 2 inch LCD mounted screen, and a control knob for managing your iPod. I had them run the line up through the center console, and into the iPod holder on the arm rest. It used an FM modulator hard wired so as to avoid any RF interference (or so it advertised). Now I have poor antenna reception, and only ok sound quality out of my iPod. A long story short, stick with Jeep recommended accessories and parts. The Mopar iPod direct connect goes directly into the unit itself the correct way and according to the install sheet, lets you control your iPod or some functions of the iPod via your finger controls. Ill report back once I get it installed. The cost is a little over $200 for the unit, or what I paid for the Best Buy special I purchased with the neat LCD screen. But now, because they mounted and drilled through some bevel plates, I will have to replace them as well. The shift silver bevel plate is like...$60 and the large center console bevel is around $150.
  • pplathpplath Posts: 1
    My compass is 6 months old with 8k miles. Approximately 2 months ago I noticed a foul smell coming from the interior of my SUV. At first the dealership suspected what they called "plastic smoke", a smell emitted from the new plastic that would disapate. It hasn't. I just got my vehicle back from a 3 week stay at the dealership service facility, they replaced the headliner (some new smart fabric smell, possibility) and upon further inspection found some sort of insulation padding under the cargo area under the spare tire that was suppose to be the source of my smell. Car was cleaned, re-assembled and returned to me. It STILL just of a chemical cleaning over top of the musty, moldy smell. Any suggestions? It goes back to the shop Monday!
  • ranchranch Posts: 3
    On 20% grades on dirt roads the Compass will loose all power , and not rev up. If you shift the automatic transmission into neutral and then back into lo gear the vehicle regaines its power. In a 1.6 mile drive this can happen as many as 5 times. Has anybody else experienced this problem. the dealership has no idea. Please respond if you can help.Thank you.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    ranch: welcome to the Compass forum. We live on a steep dirt and gravel road. We are on atleast a 30 to 35% grade, and we have never had that far. We have 7.500 miles on our Compass and it is the 4x4. Maybe there is a fuel pump problem? How many miles have you on your Compass?
    These Compass's have a good record so far, so maybe your dealer is not to sharp? Any other information would be helpful and might just jog someones idea bank.

  • Howdy! I've got a little over 21k miles and never experienced a power loss on a steep climb >20 deg. (and I've been on several, some at elevations higher than 10k feet) If I had to guess it might be a transmission fluid level problem??? If low, maybe it runs out and by shifting from D to N and back allows the level to "re-prime" and then runs out again after a little bumping along. I think the trans is sealed (we owners can't easily check the level)It is just a guess, so take it with a grain of salt. By the way, the L gear is a pseudo-gear. All it really does it set the RPMs higher for any given speed (since this is a continuously variable trans, it really doesn't have set/defined gears). You can see this by shifting to L at any speed. If your RPMs were about 2500, at any given speed, it should jump to a little over 4000. It will do this at 25 MPH or 60 MPH. It is primarily to keep the engine in the power band while climbing (keeps it from possible lugging) or to provide engine braking on a downhill segment.

    My only complaint, thus far, is an odd vibration from the engine in the 2200 to 2500 RPM range. You can feel it in the seat of your pants. It matters not if you're driving or sitting in park. When you raise the RPMs, either sitting in neutral or under gentle acceleration, it shakes from 2200 until about 2500 RPM. Under heavy acceleration it passes the revs up pretty quickly and you don't notice. I still plan on having the dealer check it out before warranty expiration. Performace is fine, just a little shake that I suppose might be a throttle position sensor or a computer tweak that might be needed. I am curious if anyone else has experienced this phenomena.

    I hope you hold the dealer's feet to the fire on this. Loss of power can be a rather hazardous situation. Maybe a trip to the hills with a dealer rep onboard would convince them?

    Keep us posted! Good luck!
  • ranchranch Posts: 3
    The compass has almost 5,000 miles, but has had the problem since it was brand new. The dealer is going to give me an on board scanner that will record the problem. Hopefully they will be able to figure it out. If they can't figure out the problem after that. They said that they would have the vehicle buy back process. Other than this problem the compass has been a very good vehicle. Thank you for your response. It's helpful to know that not every compass does this.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    ranch: The 2.4 engine is no award winner, and the initial flooring response is more of what I would expect from a 1.8 l Caliber. This world engine needs refinement, in fuel mileage, and power. I would expect with the "PILOT" (on board scanner) this will find an answer to your problem.
    The MOPAR magazine had a three page article on the World Engine and this engine is a seriously complicated engine. There are two thermostats and it goes more complecated from that. This is not an engine to do some work on yourself, except oil changes.
    I would guess that unless Chrysler gets some more real world horse power and better fuel mileage, this won't be one of Chrysler's better ideas. I personally hope this engine lasts as good as our 1996 Dodge Neon 2.L engine with 195,000 miles and still runs good.

  • colloquorcolloquor Posts: 482
    What's interesting is the difference between the consortium "World Engine" 2.4L DOHC, and the Hyundai-specific 2.4L DOHC, which is different. I have a friend who owns a 2006 Hyundai Sonata with the 2.4L DOHC "Theta" engine, and it's smooth as silk at all rev ranges. It is my understanding that DCX made some changes to Hyundai's original 2.4L design in an effort to reduce production costs. However, I don't have a confirmation of this.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    colloquor: The block is the Hyundai design and the top hals is a DCX design, with MB doing the majority of the work from a design they already had. The engine is very smooth when you drive it reasonably. Put punch it the enging sure sounds like you just unleashed a huge engine.
    The 2.4 has plenty of get up and go at speeds above 40 mph, but low speed take off is much to be desired, fuel mpg is nothing to brag about, but taking 3,200 pounds around all the time is no small chore for the 2.4 either.
    I have no idea if the same exact engine is put any other vehicle except Chrysler vehicles or not.

  • jl49jl49 Posts: 33
    I bought a Compass a month ago and I like it, but my only complaint is the gas mileage. I'm getting around 14 to 15 mpg's which is not the 23 to 26 mpg's advertised on the window sticker. Anyone have any suggestions?
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    jl49: We bought a Compass on April 3, 07. the average mpg was 22. We did get one trip that got 24 mpg. that was the one and only time in 10,200 miles. We had the so called 4x4, which is really an AWD. Our experience was less than we expected! The cheap plastic all over inside is not up to other brands standards. The power of the 2.4 engine was gutless!
    We traded it in on a Chrysler Pacifica Touring AWD. We get 24.3 mpg on the highway and 22 around our home area. That's much better than the Compass.
    I think unless Jeep makes some drastic improvements real fast the Compass is short lived at best.
    I think the fuel mpg you are getting should be better, but don't you will see the 26 that the Jeep sticker says.

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