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The future of Jeep and the end of the Compass and Patriot

Earlier this year, the top dog at Fiat, (the owners of Jeep) said that the Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot would be replaced by a single crossover model built in Italy for both Jeep and Alfa Romeo. This is welcome news because both the Compass and the Patriot are poor examples of what a Jeep should be.
Posted: May 31, 2011 - 1:37PM
Author: Roman Rosa

All Jeeps need to have an air of toughness to them. After all, we stormed Normandy with them, we fought in Korea with them, and they carried our troops in Vietnam. Battle hardness is the main principle that Jeep was founded on.

This means that Jeeps should be able to go anywhere and do anything. Its motto should be: If you wanted to go anywhere that was remote and inhospitable, and you wanted to come back in one piece, buy a Jeep.

For the most part, Jeep has held true to this. Less than ten years ago, you couldn't buy a Jeep that didn't have the same basic layout as the original Jeep. You really couldn't buy a mass produced car with better off-road ability. Sure Jeeps were a bit crude and unrefined, but I think that was part of their charm to buyers.

Recently, Jeep has been introducing new models that are more suited for suburban streets than tough Montana dirt roads or Florida mud trails. This does not mean that the street surface will always be perfect. Rain, snow, ice, rocks and tree limbs will always try to make a sticky road dangerous. The problem is that neither the Compass or the Patriot really that good at driving on the street either, which means they added nothing to Jeep's portfolio.

They didn't have any abilities over what a standard car would have. There was absolutely nothing about them that said "tough, strong, and ready." They were simply mediocre SUV's that were badged as a Jeep in order to ride the coat tails of the famous name. So thankfully, they will be replaced.

In order to truly add to Jeep, and if it truly must be more road-based, the replacement to the Compass and the Patriot should come with tools designed to tame mother nature's ability to ruin a good road.

The new Jeep model should be small, light, nimble and fuel efficient. It should have a sophisticated all wheel drive system that maintains traction in any situation, in any weather condition. It should be able to stick to the road covered in snow and ice as the rest of the cars have slid off the road, be able to navigate a dirt road or a sandy beach trail with ease, and keep its occupants safe and in control the whole time.

Only then can this model truly add to Jeep. Since Jeep only makes a few models, it needs to be good enough to create a name for itself. Here's to hoping the Italians will do just that.


Anonymous (not verified)    June 11, 2011 - 3:32AM

Well, my Compass may not be a "tough, strong and ready" beast like the author is apparently looking for. But, it doesn't roll over on easy corners like the Jeep M151A1's we drove in Vietnam in the 60's and 70's. Progress doesn't always mean returning to the bad ol' days.

gary (not verified)    January 23, 2014 - 12:26PM

I have a 2012 jeep patriot latitude with around 42,000 miles and its been the best vehicle I've owned to date. No problems, Just tires and one set of front brakes @36,000 miles. takes me where I want to go.
Great winter vehicle. Also decent gas mileage 22-23 all around.
Would buy another.

Ian (not verified)    September 13, 2014 - 10:12AM

I love Landrover but who can afford them or VW. The Jeeps are value for money.I have had Ford Japanese Korean should have bought a Jeep in the 1960's you can get side tracked with the blanket ads everywhere.