How many of you have really pushed your Compass? - Jeep Compass Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 08-08-2018, 08:48 PM Thread Starter
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How many of you have really pushed your Compass?

That may seem like an odd and leading question, but I am curious.
I just bought my Compass 4x4 with the 9-speed auto, after reading much of the commentary and hate on the Compass for its lack of power and acceleration.
What I'm finding is that they are half right.
The real issue seems to be power management/access in the 2-3k rpm range. When I'm below 2000, it accelerates as i would expect. Then, I hit 2000 and the power doesn't really seem to increase. However, if I switch to the manual mode and rev 3500+, the power and acceleration seem to turn to great. The first time I did this, I didn't time myself, but it seemed as if the car went 0-60 in about 5-7 seconds. I was able to repeat it a couple of other times....but what I noticed was that I had to make sure I hit the sweet spot, or it would lag.
Outside of that, I've done some back dirt/mud roads offroading, and the power and balance have been fine, even though mine isn't trail rated.
Back to the point, have any of you experienced this type of acceleration?
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post #2 of 34 Old 08-08-2018, 09:27 PM
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I think I can say I've had some days where I was really disappointed by what was happening in response to my input and then other random days I am shocked by the fervor it puts forth.

It doesn't swing super wildly ie during one driving session but day to day... maybe something to do with the weather or I don't know what...

First thing you have to do to head south from our home is turn out from a stop light and go up a fairly steep hill. Some days it climbs that hill like its life depends on it. Some days it seems like its taking forever for the RPMs to climb and you wonder if you will reach the speed limit before cresting the hill. Why the difference? I don't know yet.

Often I am waiting in a central turn lane on the busy 4 lane highway and when there is a break in traffic I need to gun it to get across two lanes and get to my place of work on the other side... sometimes I mash the gas and nothing happens for a terrifying 1.68 seconds while oncoming traffic barrels towards me... other days I do the same motion and I shoot across the pavement so hard I have to mash the brakes on the other side to keep from rocketing into the front window of a local business, and I think "where did that pep come from?". Same with leaving work and joining the flow of northbound traffic on the highway. No ramp or acceleration lane, we turn directly onto the highway and sometimes there is just enough room but if the jeep hesitates at all people will have to brake or smash into me, other times it claws at the pavement like a deranged rabid hound with all four wheels and we are going 70 MPH before the oncoming traffic has reached the intersection I pulled out of.

Its inconsistent and I haven't cared too much but I have not pinned it down to whether it matters if the motor is up to temp or not, what the ambient temperature is, how I've been driving it lately... seems like certain things you read on the internet lead you to believe the TCM slowly learns from your driving habits and tweaks throttle response and shift points accordingly... this makes sense to me because it almost feels like the Jeep *knows* when it has let you down (huge unacceptable lag trying to cross the highway) and the next time its like it tries to make up for it, leading to be backing off on my foot mashing...

Its probably all in my head but it definitely seems faster some days and doggier on others. Not the first vehicle I have felt this way about either. I do tend to swing pretty far day to day in how aggressive I am being. Some days I drive like a total grandma, other days like I'm racing to the hospital, maybe my perceived variance in responsiveness from the vehicle is just a latent effect of driving inconsistently.

I don't use the manual mode much, it. takes. for. ever. for it to shift after giving the input to the lever and I can't stand that. Planning to do a shift at redline you better bump the lever at about 4k because by the time the derpy thing responds you will have crossed the 5k mark and be well on your way to 6... and when the power just isn't there it isn't there... foot to the floor waiting for RPMs to slowly work their way up. Most days I don't care too much but every once in a while I need to get behind the wheel of something with balls like our turbo civic or even my 86 firebird which is not fast but at least it exciting and responsive.

I had a few good days using the dealer's 300 HP rental car while my BCM was being replaced and I keep thinking "man, if they would just put that V6 in the Compass!".
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post #3 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 02:22 AM
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i think what you are feeling is this:

max Torque @ RPM : 175 @ 3900
max Horsepower @ RPM : 180 @ 6400


so most torque is between 3 and 4k.

This is why 3rd gear is a monster merging on the highway and climbing hills. I've never had issues with acceleration, as long as I aim for that 3-4k.

@arudlang I have hypothesis as to why your jeep may not be shifting when you tell it to shift. This is probably internal programming/safety to prevent you from damaging your engine.

Downshifting to the maximum torque range is cautioned against in the Jeep owner's manual. On page 240 "Manual transmission shift speeds" (image attached)

These speeds line up with the 3-4k RPM spot. So for example if you were going 75 mph in 5th gear and you wanted to get a little extra speed to pass, and decide to downshift to 4th gear, you will be above 3500 rpm. I do this sometimes when I need to, despite it being advised against in the manual. If you follow the owners manual "maximum shift speeds" you will almost always be downshifting to below 3000 rpm. Again, I advise to follow the manual, as these parts can be costly if you wear out clutch etc.

So while most of this is caution in the owners manual for manual transmission, there could be internal programming in the automatic (even the shift-your-self auto) that prevents the engine at these speeds from shifting until it drops to a safe mph.

I don't know for sure just throwing that out there.
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post #4 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 02:26 AM
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Sort of an apples to coconuts comparison, I realize, but I notice that our 2011 Wrangler has moods like your Compass. Usually at lower RPMs, particularly if I'm making it work -- I can tell that its getting ready to stall. Even if I rev the engine, as soon as I put a load on it and let out the clutch, it dies. I've gotten to where I can feel it coming on and I have to put it in neutral and let it idle for a few seconds till it 'feels' right. Then I can let out the clutch and it will respond normally. Feels almost like its running so lean that its starved for fuel. Yes, I know how to drive a manual. Been driving standards since 1970. Probably half the vehicles I've owned were standards including three previous Wranglers.

At worst it goes into this funky putt-putt-putt where it has no power. I can stomp on the gas but it simply won't respond. All I can do is shut it off or intentionally stall it by letting out the clutch, then restart. Very annoying in the middle of a busy intersection.
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post #5 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 03:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sam's compass View Post
That may seem like an odd and leading question, but I am curious.
I just bought my Compass 4x4 with the 9-speed auto, after reading much of the commentary and hate on the Compass for its lack of power and acceleration.
What I'm finding is that they are half right.
The real issue seems to be power management/access in the 2-3k rpm range. When I'm below 2000, it accelerates as i would expect. Then, I hit 2000 and the power doesn't really seem to increase. However, if I switch to the manual mode and rev 3500+, the power and acceleration seem to turn to great. The first time I did this, I didn't time myself, but it seemed as if the car went 0-60 in about 5-7 seconds. I was able to repeat it a couple of other times....but what I noticed was that I had to make sure I hit the sweet spot, or it would lag.
Outside of that, I've done some back dirt/mud roads offroading, and the power and balance have been fine, even though mine isn't trail rated.
Back to the point, have any of you experienced this type of acceleration?
You would have to drop the compass out of a plane to go 0-60 anywhere close to 5 seconds. Even 7 seconds you would have to have it going down a REALLY steep hill.

Motortrend clocked the trailhawk at 9.4 and the limited at 10.5.
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post #6 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 05:05 AM Thread Starter
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You would have to drop the compass out of a plane to go 0-60 anywhere close to 5 seconds. Even 7 seconds you would have to have it going down a REALLY steep hill.

Motortrend clocked the trailhawk at 9.4 and the limited at 10.5.

I know what organizations have it clocked at, but the reality is that they often do things like floor the pedal. In many cars, flooring it does not give the best power output - normally there is a sweet spot.
I'm away from my Compass for a little while, but when I get back home I'm going to try it out maybe with someone else in the car to help me test it.
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post #7 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 05:46 AM
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Originally Posted by sam's compass View Post
I know what organizations have it clocked at, but the reality is that they often do things like floor the pedal. In many cars, flooring it does not give the best power output - normally there is a sweet spot.
I'm away from my Compass for a little while, but when I get back home I'm going to try it out maybe with someone else in the car to help me test it.
There is no way compass can reach 60mph in 5 to 7 seconds. A car like subaru impreza wrx do that in 5.5 secs and that is a 270hp compact sedan.
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post #8 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 12:28 PM
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I agree 5 seconds is impossible but I also agree that sometimes it feels quicker than the stated 9 or 10, and I have also noticed putting the pedal to the floor tends to result in getting less somehow and that sometimes giving it 85% throttle somehow yields a better response.

As far as the slow shifts in the manual mode of the 9 speed auto I think you guys are right, the computer is probably trying to protect the transmission and driveline from a hard snap from the motor when its at peak torque, ignores my pedal input and takes its time easing off the throttle and feathering it back in after the shift. Doesn't seem like it should be necessary, the motor basically doesn't have enough power to hurt itself or anything else and I have read the transmission is rated for almost double the torque these motors produce, but whatever. I'm sure its all about longevity.
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post #9 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by arudlang View Post
I agree 5 seconds is impossible but I also agree that sometimes it feels quicker than the stated 9 or 10, and I have also noticed putting the pedal to the floor tends to result in getting less somehow and that sometimes giving it 85% throttle somehow yields a better response.

As far as the slow shifts in the manual mode of the 9 speed auto I think you guys are right, the computer is probably trying to protect the transmission and driveline from a hard snap from the motor when its at peak torque, ignores my pedal input and takes its time easing off the throttle and feathering it back in after the shift. Doesn't seem like it should be necessary, the motor basically doesn't have enough power to hurt itself or anything else and I have read the transmission is rated for almost double the torque these motors produce, but whatever. I'm sure its all about longevity.
This is my experience as well. Considering the throttle control is electronic, we dont actually have a real mechanical link between the pedal and the throttle body. So even even you floor it, the car just opens the throttle body as much as it pleases . How much you press on the pedal just tells the ECU how much you want to accelerate and how fast, based on that it decides how much power the engine will produce and which gear will be used. I think this is one of the reason why the car can feel very different under different situations, the ECU can basically underestimate or overestimation how much power you requested .This is also why it gets better over time as ECU and PCU adjust to your style and makes a lot more consistent estimations between throttle pedal position and power requested.

Also, on top of your point you made about preserving the components, I think the traction control is very conservative. If it detects one wheel is about to spin, it immediately cuts the engine power. The problem is, it does that even before the driver can actually feel there is spinning, so to the driver, it feels like the car is not accelerating. As a result, the drivers presses to the throttle pedal even more and the ECU cuts the engine power even more, causing the "lag" feeling we describe. One thing i realized is that the car accelerates a lot faster if you let it move a bit, compared to lunching from a complete stop. I assume this is because traction control limiting engine power to prevent tire spin.

For testing, I completely turned off traction control and put the car in 4wd lock, the car was a lot more responsive to the input.

Last edited by Tripod; 08-09-2018 at 06:48 PM.
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post #10 of 34 Old 08-09-2018, 07:51 PM
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Something worth pointing out is that these Jeeps like a lot of new vehicles on the market have a learning mode. It takes a while for the computer to build a driving profile custom to the driver. If your operating with two or more different drivers this process can confuse the ECM and take it a bit to catch on to what is going on.

Something else that seems to screw with learned driving behavior is getting the ECM flashed/reflashed. After the TSB for the rumbling noise I posted it looked like MPG might have gone up a little. Well this was short lived and I think it was the result of the computer starting all over again on learning driving profile. MPG is back to norm and I had not noticed it I guess because we were focused on trying to see if the noise was going to stay gone and what the effects of this fix on the AWD,traction control and nanny ware but our Compass had slowed down a bit and transmission behaved differently. Before the fix a sharp jab on the throttle was producing different shifts from mashing the throttle at an even pace. Ours stopped doing this for a while after the fix and is just really starting to relearn this behavior.

I think this might should be something different to try for some of you rather than just flooring the go pedal give it a jab just an inch or so and see if the TCU can better predict gearing pattern for the down and progresive up shifts. I think the computer sees or learns to see the quicker pedal movement as your wanting to get moving as fast as possible like yesterday. Versus a slower steady pedal movement to the floor as you want to get there sometime in the nearish future.

I certainly have no complaints on acceleration for normal everyday driving I don't race the Compass because I did not buy a race car/sports car so I can't speak of pushing it in this nature. Where we push it is off pavement on rough roads if they can be called roads and it has done extremely well doing this.


I will add for sam's compass that I don't know how many miles you have on your Compass right now but I found the 2.4 to take a while longer than other engines to really break in and until it does it will seem a bit more doggy than it will be after it gets pass 5-6K or so on the clock. MPG also tends to get better once a few thousand miles have passed.
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post #11 of 34 Old 08-11-2018, 02:32 AM
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Motortrend clocked the trailhawk at 9.4 and the limited at 10.5.
Car and Driver had the 6 MT at 8.4 s for 0-60 mph and had 9.3 s for the base automatic. The fun of rowing your own gears and a second faster.
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post #12 of 34 Old 08-11-2018, 03:39 PM
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As soon as I got my Compass I drove over 1,000 miles in 48 hours and went four wheeling. I've only owned my Compass TH for 2 weeks and now close to 2,000. I would say I've pushed my vehicle. Hope this answers your question. And so far she's running like a champ. For the off road part. I'm glad I have skid plates 😂
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post #13 of 34 Old 08-12-2018, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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I will add for sam's compass that I don't know how many miles you have on your Compass right now but I found the 2.4 to take a while longer than other engines to really break in and until it does it will seem a bit more doggy than it will be after it gets pass 5-6K or so on the clock. MPG also tends to get better once a few thousand miles have passed.
I hope so.
When I am back driving my Compass regularly, I will continue to play around with it.
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post #14 of 34 Old 08-12-2018, 01:39 PM Thread Starter
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For testing, I completely turned off traction control and put the car in 4wd lock, the car was a lot more responsive to the input.
This is an interesting idea. I will try that out.
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post #15 of 34 Old 08-12-2018, 11:59 PM
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This is an interesting idea. I will try that out.
I have been experimenting with this as well. Is there any reason, other than loss of mpg, not to drive in 4wd all the time? Tire wear maybe?
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post #16 of 34 Old 08-13-2018, 07:05 AM
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I have been experimenting with this as well. Is there any reason, other than loss of mpg, not to drive in 4wd all the time? Tire wear maybe?


It will probably cause the PTU and the rear and front differentials to wear faster. If you do that, changing their fluids more often would be a good idea.


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post #17 of 34 Old 08-15-2018, 10:56 PM
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Off road no, but have been doing this for street driving since my purchase of the 2nd Gen in May. Let the auto trans work until 3rd gear and then switch to manual riding the RPMs to at least 5K for 3rd, 4th and 5th gears. After 5th it really makes no sense to continue with the manual if on the highway, just switch it back to auto. And I never down shift, anytime hitting the brake and I'm in the 3-5 gears I slap it to the right and let the computer (auto) down shift. All the power people are complaining isn't there has been there the whole time. This method is great for on ramp when merging onto a highway.
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post #18 of 34 Old 08-17-2018, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by sam's compass View Post
That may seem like an odd and leading question, but I am curious.
I just bought my Compass 4x4 with the 9-speed auto, after reading much of the commentary and hate on the Compass for its lack of power and acceleration.
What I'm finding is that they are half right.
The real issue seems to be power management/access in the 2-3k rpm range. When I'm below 2000, it accelerates as i would expect. Then, I hit 2000 and the power doesn't really seem to increase. However, if I switch to the manual mode and rev 3500+, the power and acceleration seem to turn to great. The first time I did this, I didn't time myself, but it seemed as if the car went 0-60 in about 5-7 seconds. I was able to repeat it a couple of other times....but what I noticed was that I had to make sure I hit the sweet spot, or it would lag.
Outside of that, I've done some back dirt/mud roads offroading, and the power and balance have been fine, even though mine isn't trail rated.
Back to the point, have any of you experienced this type of acceleration?
I agree 99%. From a stop...pushing it, it does fine....it’s just too slow to downshift in the upper gears...horribly so.
FCA could fix this in one software update...add a “sport” mode as my 2017 Grand Cherokee....if the EPA (milage claims) allows it on the G/C ...why not on the Compass?
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post #19 of 34 Old 08-21-2018, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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I agree 99%. From a stop...pushing it, it does fine....it’s just too slow to downshift in the upper gears...horribly so.
FCA could fix this in one software update...add a “sport” mode as my 2017 Grand Cherokee....if the EPA (milage claims) allows it on the G/C ...why not on the Compass?
My general thought here is more than Jeep is more concerned with competition than anything else. For instance, there's no reason the computer features and the turbo shouldn't be available in the US, but they aren't.
In Australia, they have access to the Diesel, which by their estimation is actually a good engine with balance.
I bought this car for its potential. There are many features and functions that would normally fit in with a larger vehicle, but they should be able to work on this vehicle with a little manufacturer tweaking.
I live overseas right now, so I plan on taking my Jeep to local dealers to see if they have specific manufacturer upgrades they can provide me to improve the Compass to its potential.
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post #20 of 34 Old 08-21-2018, 02:44 PM
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I think I can say I've had some days where I was really disappointed by what was happening in response to my input and then other random days I am shocked by the fervor it puts forth.

It doesn't swing super wildly ie during one driving session but day to day... maybe something to do with the weather or I don't know what...
Weather has a significant influence on HP due to the density of the air. You can have 10%+ more HP on a cold day compared to a hot day. Elevation, baro pressure, and humidity play a role as well. In the extreme you could be running around 195HP on the coldest winter day and 165 on the hottest summer day. Those are just estimates, there may be other limits on the engine that limit HP. I really noticed the impact of ambient air temperature when I had a supercharged mustang. Cold mornings in the fall were fun drives.

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post #21 of 34 Old 08-29-2018, 03:21 AM
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Does taking it on a track count as "really pushing it" ?

2018 trailhawk is daughter's car (happy 16) -- and part of my deal with her was she had to do new-driver car control clinic through NASA, and it included track time.


Here's skidpad video:
ugh it says I don't have enough posts to have a link , but it's youtube dot com / watch?v=DygoWOZ6mGk





There were all kinds of cars there, including a 2017 mustang 5.0 that really smoked, a modern Audi S4, an older BMW 323, etc. What was interesting is how much better handling the Compass had than say a Chevy LT1500. What was REALLY interesting was how badly an old 1970's mustang did -- oversteer all over the place, and lack of ABS made it perform horribly in the slalom and such, but it did make for impressive burn outs

The biggest observation was the sports cars did best (duh), the wagons and compact SUV's like our compass' did next best, and large vehicles like the LT1500, ford excursion, and minivans did the worst, by a noticeable amount, in terms of maneuverability.

Other cars, like the Juke were noticeably slower. Some cars, like the Mazda Miata are faster in a straight line, but definitely more

The engine, and transmission .. it kind of is what it is. The handling and braking, however, are quite good by comparison.
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post #22 of 34 Old 08-30-2018, 01:49 AM
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2018 trailhawk is daughter's car (happy 16).
Lucky girl! When I was 16 I got permission to get a car: a 1960 Ford Falcon with a very modest I-6, and it was a real fixer-upper. Spent the first two months getting it roadworthy. I had it three years and never got bothered by a cop because, frankly, the car was incapable of speeding.
Next I got a 1968 V-8 Impala and had my first speeding ticket within 2 months.
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post #23 of 34 Old 08-31-2018, 01:08 AM
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I have had my Trailhawk out on the beach multiple times! The sand by us is very deep, I air the tires down to 15psi, 4wd lock and traction off and it just goes. The sand mode isn't needed and the only reason I lock it in 4x4 is b/c I could hear it clank in a few times while driving and switching ruts, and sometimes the traction control gets over zealous. I actually stopped to help a new Wrangler owner who got stuck, and he refused the help.

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post #24 of 34 Old 09-22-2018, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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I have had my Trailhawk out on the beach multiple times! The sand by us is very deep, I air the tires down to 15psi, 4wd lock and traction off and it just goes. The sand mode isn't needed and the only reason I lock it in 4x4 is b/c I could hear it clank in a few times while driving and switching ruts, and sometimes the traction control gets over zealous. I actually stopped to help a new Wrangler owner who got stuck, and he refused the help.

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This has to be the funniest thing I've read in a while.

I still haven't gotten home yet, but I can't wait to get back and do more stuff.
I'm going to see if there is a track or course near me that I could take it out on and test out.
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post #25 of 34 Old 09-25-2018, 02:19 PM
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Nothing to crazy, just went on some trails. It did great in the mud and climbing.
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post #26 of 34 Old 10-09-2018, 12:36 AM
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Pushed it al the way in SC photo really don’t show How steep little Jeep that goes anywhere
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post #27 of 34 Old 10-09-2018, 10:36 AM
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Need rock rail bad lucky it was that bad this time
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post #28 of 34 Old 10-09-2018, 06:11 PM
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I have done some moderate to rough stuff
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post #29 of 34 Old 10-11-2018, 07:11 PM
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Looking good guys! I'm anxious to take mine off the pavement, but I'm always worried about breaking something. That or it getting scratch/beaten up through the trails.
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2018 Jeep Compass Lattitude - Billet Silver, 4x4
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited, EcoDiesel - GONE
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post #30 of 34 Old 10-12-2018, 03:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RadRacer
I'm always worried about breaking something. That or it getting scratch/beaten up through the trails.
The only thing I'm worried about is the electronics going full-haywire and leaving me stranded. I've had two separate warnings about the ESS system that have come and went in the last week. Electrical gremlins will be the death of these things long before anyone breaks something mechanical off road it seems.
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