The Jeep Patriot soldiers on for another year as one half of the brand's pair of compact SUV models.
Closely related to the Compass, the Patriot projects a more traditional Jeep look, with big, round headlights and sharp corners replacing its sibling's softer edges. But underneath, these two are nearly identical: Patriot uses the same 2.0L (158 hp/141 lb-ft of torque) four-cylinder that comes in front-wheel drive only. It can be optioned to a 2.4L making 172 hp and 165 lb-ft, which can be had with front- or all-wheel drive.
Both engines can be paired with a five-speed manual transmission, and with the larger engine, this is one of few SUVs and crossovers of any kind that can be had with a stickshift and four-wheel drive.
Transmission choices include a continuously variable automatic (CVT) that can be added to either engine, and a six-speed automatic available with the 2.4L. But if you want tops in Patriot off-road capability, the Freedom Drive II 4x4 system, with its low-range gearing, only comes with the CVT.
The most fuel-efficient version is a 2.0L FWD with stickshift, with estimates of 10.3/7.9 L/100 km (city/highway). Thirstiest is a 2.4L 4x4 with the CVT, whose ratings are 11.7/10.3 L/100 km. If you can live without the more robust 4x4 system, the 2.4L and six-speed automatic return a more attractive highway estimate of 9.2 L/100 km.
Patriot is looking a bit dated, having been around and largely unchanged since its introduction for 2007, a surprising thing given the popularity and competitive nature of the compact crossover/SUV category.. The Fiat-based Renegade is a much fresher design, but is also smaller, and we suspect some buyers view the Patriot as a more legitimate Jeep.
For a starting price of $16,795, the Patriot Sport comes with the 2.0L engine, FWD and a five-speed manual transmission. Standard features include a 12-volt power outlet, fold-flat load floor, full-length centre console, lighted cup holders, luxury floor mats, manual locks, windows and side mirrors, map lights, outside temperature display, cloth seats, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, sliding sun visors with mirrors, cruise control, tilt steering, four-speaker stereo with auxiliary input, black side mirror housings, roof rails and door handles, rear window defroster and wiper/washer, 16-inch steel wheels, and hill-start assist (with the manual transmission).
Sport Altitude II trim adds sport mesh cloth seats, heated front seats, fog lights, mineral grey exterior trim, bright exhaust tip, leather-trimmed steering wheel, 17-inch mineral grey aluminum wheels and tow hooks.
The North Edition also builds on the Sport, and gets a 115-volt power outlet, air conditioning, auto-dimming rearview mirror with microphone, automatic headlights, body-colour door handles, bright exhaust tip and side roof rails, fog lights, Bluetooth, keyless entry, heated power side mirrors, power windows, remote USB charging port, height-adjustable driver's seat, reclining rear seat and satellite radio.
High Altitude models build on the North Edition with leather-faced seats, heated front seats, power six-way driver's seat with manual lumbar, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, sunroof and 17-inch wheels with graphite-painted pockets. High Altitude trim can be optioned with a 75th Anniversary bronze appearance package that adds unique wheels and various exterior trim elements.
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