2017 Jeep Compass

2017 Jeep Compass

Episode 3639
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

With the expanding Jeep lineup recently adding the subcompact Renegade, one might have thought the aged Compass’ was on its way out. Well not so fast, as Jeep has just released an all-new compact Compass, making for a two-pronged small  SUV attack from the brand. Plus, this Compass claims to have shed its “near Jeep” reputation. So is the new Compass for “real”? Let’s all be the judge of that.

If you thought there wasn’t enough room in the Jeep lineup for another crossover between the Renegade and the Cherokee, well you’re wrong, as that spot is now filled by the reborn 2017 Jeep Compass.

And while that might not exactly cause mass cheering around your workplace or ours, it will certainly create some buzz in plenty of the over 100 countries that it will be sold in. 

The Compass still rides on a front-wheel-drive based chassis, though no longer the Dodge Caliber’s; rather, the Fiat derived Jeep Renegade’s. 

There’s a choice of two all-wheel-drive systems, Active Drive and Active Drive Low. Trailhawk editions come with Active Drive Low, which adds low range and Rock mode with Hill-Descent Control to the standard Selec-Terrain.

The Compass’ exterior design is without a doubt much more SUVish in appearance than the compact wagon of before; drawing more cues from the larger Grand Cherokee than chassis-mate Renegade.

The front end is still tall and chunky looking, with the shortened 7-slot grille stretching fully between the black-trimmed headlights. A black-painted roof is optional, as are LED tail lights. 

And, for those Jeep Easter Eggs we’re not supposed to fully understand, there’s a lizard molded into the cowl, and a Loch Ness monster on the rear window. 

We do understand FCA’s Tigershark 2.4-liter I4; our only engine choice for now. Here it produces 180-horsepower and 175 lb-ft. of torque. Walking up the trim levels will move you from 6-speed manual, to 6-speed automatic, and ultimately 9-speed auto. 

The interior appears almost upscale, more so in Limited trim; with little Jeep quirkiness to be found. Front seat space is ample, made more so by a very low console for an almost airy feel.

Seat cushions felt firm initially; but after a long day in the saddle, they proved to be very comfortable.

Rear seat space is good on headroom, adequate on legroom, but the cushions are harder and flatter.

Even base models feature a UConnect touchscreen center dash, but upgrading to navigation gets you a much larger 8.5-inch version. 

A handy power lift gate is optional. Behind it is a good 27.2 cu-ft. of cargo space. Split, nearly flat folding rear seats expand that to a respectable 59.8 cu-ft.  

As for driving; well, The Compass never really feels overpowered, merely adequate. 

And that 9-speed still seems to be a powertrain weak link. It seldom felt like it was in the right gear at the right time, and was rather slow to make any changes.

We found the ride to be, somewhat surprisingly, very smooth, even with the Limited’s 18-inch wheels. Interior noise levels suffered a bit from wind noise around the windows. The kind that makes you keep checking to see if they’re all the way up. 

Always wanting to prove their off-road merits, Jeep arranged for backwoods time in Northern California. We hit some real trails, not just specially created obstacles as many carmakers like to send you through. We’re not talkin’ hardcore stuff here, but this little Compass Trailhawk is clearly more capable than anything else in its class.  

But, our advice is that unless you plan to do lots of off-roading, skip the Trailhawk and stick with still-capable lesser trims and save some money. Or, spend about the same and go for luxury with Limited trim.

It will take adding a few option packages, but comprehensive safety systems are available; including Full-speed Collision Warning Plus with Advanced Brake Assist. 

Regardless of drivetrain, Government Fuel Economy Ratings are all very close to the front-wheel-drive manual’s 23-City, 32-Highway, and 26-Combined. Our mileage loop was right on at 25.9 MPG.

The Energy Impact Score is 12.7-barrels of annual oil consumption with 5.6-tons of CO2 emitted. 

Compass base pricing ranges from a Sport at $22,090 to Limited at $30,090. But be advised, there are some 2017 Compass carryovers from last generation on dealer’s lots. Trust us, the new one is the one you want.   

With crossover and SUV sales showing no sign of slowing down, FCA’s Jeep brand could probably put just about anything out there and be successful with it. That’s not what they did with the genuinely all-new 2017 Jeep Compass. It’s miles better than its predecessor. And, with Jeep more and more a global brand, this small and capable family runabout is certain to have loads of appeal both home and abroad. 


  • Engine: 2.4 liter
  • Horsepower: 180
  • Torque: 175 lb-ft.
  • EPA: 23 mpg city / 32 mpg highway
  • Energy Impact: 12.7 barrels of oil/yr
  • CO2 Emissions: 5.6 tons/yr
2023 BMW X7 Driving

2023 BMW X7

Should Keep The BMW Faithful Coming Back For More

Episode 4238
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

While BMW got serious about their SUV game around the same time as most other luxury brands, it took them until just a few years ago to deliver a 3-row example. This year, that X7 is updated with new style and new tech. So, let’s see if that makes it the ultimate premium 3-row family machine.

When it comes to utility vehicles, bigger seems to be better for a lot of people. So, for BMW, there’s none bigger or better than the X7 3-row utility, which for 2023 gets a comprehensive update after just 4-years on the market. That includes a facelift to bring it more in line with the new 7-series carline, which is to say joins the more vertical, aggressive grille party. Also, the actual headlights have been moved lower in the front fascia, with squinty DRLs above for the first time on a BMW. In back, taillights take on a 3D posture, with a new chrome bar connecting them.

There are also multiple new M Sport packages to choose from to spice up the exterior, with larger air intakes up front, high-gloss black trim, upgraded exhaust, cascade grille lighting, and 22-inch wheels, as well as M Sport brakes…

…and the interior too, with aluminum trim and exclusive steering wheel. But, by far the biggest change inside for ‘23 is a new dashtop curved display that eliminates the typical BMW well-hooded gauge pod and blends 12-inch Live Cockpit Pro into the 15-inch infotainment touchscreen, which now features iDrive8. Both a Head-Up Display and a large panoramic sunroof are standard.

2023 BMW X7 Interior Dashboard

Whether set up for 2 or 3 passengers, 2nd row seat room remains plentiful, and though the X7 doesn’t look ungainly large like many of its competitors, access to the 3rd row is quite good. Cargo space is reached through a fairly unique, Range Rover-style, split tailgate, which is quite oddly satisfying to watch unfold. There’s room for 48.6 cubic-ft. of goods behind the 2nd row, with a max of 90.4 cu.-ft.

The base xDrive40i has always been the sensible choice, even more so now with a new inline-6 turbo getting a significant bump in horsepower from 335 to 375, and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that results in a total of 398 lb-ft. of torque.

At our Mason Dixon test track, there was enough to blast this big beast to 60 in just 5.4-seconds. That’s only about half a second slower than the V8 did the deed back in 2019. Making that optional 523-horsepower V8 simply overkill at this point. Our best ¼-mile pass was 13.9-seconds at 100 miles-per-hour. All X7s get a quick shifting sport-tuned 8-speed automatic transmission, which adds a new Sprint Function that finds the lowest usable gear instantly and maxes electric boost with a hold of the left shift paddle. What fun!

New looks and updated tech are cool, but BMW has also addressed dynamics as well, with a retuning of all chassis systems, including the optional Dynamic Handling Package which adds adaptive suspension with roll stabilization and uses GPS and camera data to prepare for what’s coming. We’re not sure if our slalom course was anticipated, but the X7 sure felt well-equipped to handle it. All-wheel drive is standard on all X7s, along with comprehensive drive modes.

In our braking runs, the pads bit down hard quickly, stopping us from 60 in just 115-feet with very little nosedive.

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Government Fuel Economy Ratings for the 6-cylinder are 21-City, 25-Highway, and 22-Combined. We averaged just 21.0 miles-per-gallon on Premium.

There’s an average Energy Impact Score; 13.5-barrels of oil yearly, with CO2 emissions of 6.5-tons.

Pricing starts at $78,845, and it’s a significant step up from there to $104,095 if you want the V8. Even more reason to stick with the 6-cylinder as far as we’re concerned.

It took the ultimate driving machine folks quite a bit of time to enter the 3-row family crossover segment, but when they did, they were able to create their largest utility ever and keep it consistent with their values. For 2023, the BMW X7 gets even more dynamic, embraces new tech, and looks better too. All things that should keep the BMW faithful coming back for more.


  • Engine: I-6
  • Horsepower: 375
  • 0-60 mph: 5.4 seconds
  • 60-0 Braking: 115 feet (avg)
  • MW Fuel Economy: 21.0 MPG
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic
  • Torque: 398 lb-ft.
  • 1/4 Mile: 13.9-seconds at 100 mph
  • EPA: 21 City / 25 Highway / 22 Combined