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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone come across any info on adding the Trailhawk drive options to the non-TH Compasses? I was looking into Hill Descent Control the other day and started to wonder what it would take to install it into my Latitude. I quickly located the correct knob (PN 5XF15LXHAA), and when I looked into the drivetrain, the only differences I could find were in the drive ratios. Other than the different ratios, there appears to be no difference in the drivetrain between the models.

Which begs the question. Using the software security bypass and the software update utilities available to the public, would it be possible to get 4Low & Hill Descent Control to work on a non-Trailhawk Compass, using the non-TH ratios? It's obviously never going to be a rock crawler, but it could still be a useful thing on loose surfaces and the hill descent would be a great feature to add.

Assuming that you're not concerned about voiding the warranty, of course...
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Not all of us want to drive around with giant orange hooks sticking out of our cars. I'm not a fan of the Trailhawk styling...at all.

Honestly, I'm mostly interested in adding hill descent, but it looks like Hill Descent and 4-Low are a package deal on the Compass. Can't have one without the other. I don't plan on running any trails, but I drive on dirt roads in the Sierra Nevada's at least once a month with a trailer on and some of the logic changes with 4-Lo might be useful.

I already have the security bypass module coming in for another mod I'm planning on the car. The knob is only $97. If this is something that can be activated easily, why not do it?

This video shows the difference between Auto mode and 4Lo in the Compass on uneven surfaces. You'll notice that the big difference is in where is applies the power, which means that the computer plays a bigger role than the drivetrain. They all have the same computer...it's just software differences.

youtube.com/watch?v=8vjUfo05GEs
 

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Not all of us want to drive around with giant orange hooks sticking out of our cars. I'm not a fan of the Trailhawk styling...at all.
i kinda agree with you in a way. i don't like the hood but i understand it's purpose
 

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Not all of us want to drive around with giant orange hooks sticking out of our cars. I'm not a fan of the Trailhawk styling...at all.

Honestly, I'm mostly interested in adding hill descent, but it looks like Hill Descent and 4-Low are a package deal on the Compass. Can't have one without the other. I don't plan on running any trails, but I drive on dirt roads in the Sierra Nevada's at least once a month with a trailer on and some of the logic changes with 4-Lo might be useful.

I already have the security bypass module coming in for another mod I'm planning on the car. The knob is only $97. If this is something that can be activated easily, why not do it?

This video shows the difference between Auto mode and 4Lo in the Compass on uneven surfaces. You'll notice that the big difference is in where is applies the power, which means that the computer plays a bigger role than the drivetrain. They all have the same computer...it's just software differences.

youtube.com/watch?v=8vjUfo05GEs
alfaobd has the ability to enable hill descent control in the body computer.
 

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I'm curious if all of these significant mods would void factory warranty since these mods are not "options" sold by FCA. We're not talking HID lights and new alloy wheels here. I would have gotten the Trailhawk version too if it was available to me at the time of purchase. It was the same price as my Limited when they got one in a few months later.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
alfaobd has the ability to enable hill descent control in the body computer.
Good to know! Does it offer settings for 4-Low, or other Trailhawk driveline settings?


I'm guessing that the only way to know with any certainty is to buy the knob and give it a shot. I'm still searching, in the hope that someone has tried something similar at some point.
 

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Not all of us want to drive around with giant orange hooks sticking out of our cars. I'm not a fan of the Trailhawk styling...at all.

Honestly, I'm mostly interested in adding hill descent, but it looks like Hill Descent and 4-Low are a package deal on the Compass. Can't have one without the other. I don't plan on running any trails, but I drive on dirt roads in the Sierra Nevada's at least once a month with a trailer on and some of the logic changes with 4-Lo might be useful.

I already have the security bypass module coming in for another mod I'm planning on the car. The knob is only $97. If this is something that can be activated easily, why not do it?

This video shows the difference between Auto mode and 4Lo in the Compass on uneven surfaces. You'll notice that the big difference is in where is applies the power, which means that the computer plays a bigger role than the drivetrain. They all have the same computer...it's just software differences.

youtube.com/watch?v=8vjUfo05GEs
4lo on the compass is literally just the computer locking the transmission in first gear. You don't need a knob. Part of the overall "crawl ratio" does include the ratio of the shorter differential ratio of the TH model. You want 4lo? Just lock it in 1st.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
4lo on the compass is literally just the computer locking the transmission in first gear. You don't need a knob.
Interesting. You do need a knob if you want to enable hill descent though.

And because Rock mode is just a computer setting that changes how power is sent to the wheels, it sounds like there's a real possibility this could work.

Question is...do I want to risk breaking something expensive (like my warranty) to find out?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm curious if all of these significant mods would void factory warranty since these mods are not "options" sold by FCA. We're not talking HID lights and new alloy wheels here.
In the U.S. at least, it's a bit of a grey area. Legally, modifying your car generally will not void any warranties UNLESS the manufacturer can demonstrate that the modification led to the failure. Car manufacturers have attempted to void warranties over modifications before, and they've ended up in arbitration or court. Sometimes the manufacturer wins, and sometimes they lose.

If I install a Trailhawk SelecTerrain knob in my Latitude, and two months later the transmission explodes while I'm driving down the freeway in Auto mode, will my transmission warranty be valid? Probably. While the knob change COULD have contributed to it, that would be a very difficult thing for FCA to prove. If I install that knob, push the hill descent button, and immediately blow a hole in my transmission, we're going to have a very different discussion.

If I updated the computer using AlphaODB and the body computer became unresponsive, you can 100% bet that they're not going to do a warranty repair on that part. They can demonstrate that the failure came directly from my tampering with the part, and was not caused by a defect or normal use. If I turn on hill assist in the computer, and two months later the computer fritzed out and died when I tried to remote start it, FCA would have to demonstrate how my modification damaged the computer. The fact that I'd accessed it wouldn't be enough to void the warranty on its own (particularly since I'd activated a feature that FCA directly supports on other models).

It's worth mentioning that in most U.S. states, consumer protection laws generally prohibit manufacturers from voiding the entire warranty outright anyway. The warranty is something that you purchased and have a legal right to use for the entire length of its original term. The manufacturer simply gets to determine whether a specific repair should be excluded under the terms of the warranty you purchased.

If you replace the wheels on your Compass, and your cheap, poorly balanced wheels cause a wheel bearing to fail, FCA can decline to repair it under warranty because your part led to the failure. That decision would only impact the wheel bearings though...everything else would be fully covered.
 

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Magnuson-Moss Act generally protects the consumer and allows you to customize your vehicle the way you see fit. But reprogramming a PCM module, adding water injection and turbos and these other serious modification would surely void the warranties connected with those area. With all the issues plaguing this vehicle electronics already, why would you want to complicate it even further?
 

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Trailhawk also has a different final drive ratio. So it is not entirely a software based system. The issue is, it can absolutely void the warranty if you activate it on the software side and anything goes wrong with the drivetrain (including the tranny, PTU, and diffs). They can argue that you activated a a software setting that was not designed for those drivetrain components and therefore damaged them(even if the only thing different is the final drive). Would it really be reasonable to, say, tranny, failed because of this? Probably no. But in the end, you will use the car in a mode with components not designed for it (the moment you activate low range, the car computer switch to a mode that assumes final drive ratio is that of a TH and manages power according to that), so if you end up in court, you will lose.


2018 Jeep Compass - Technical Specs
 

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Good to know! Does it offer settings for 4-Low, or other Trailhawk driveline settings?


I'm guessing that the only way to know with any certainty is to buy the knob and give it a shot. I'm still searching, in the hope that someone has tried something similar at some point.
You will probably also need to change the "terrain selector mode" in alfaobd, and enabled "Four wheel low drive" setting. All of these are car configuration options in the body computer.
 

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Not all of us want to drive around with giant orange hooks sticking out of our cars. I'm not a fan of the Trailhawk styling...at all.

Instead of all of this crap that is going to cost a bunch of money, void your warranty, and lead to headaches.... sell yours, get a TH, and spend about 15 bucks on black hooks and a razor blade to peel the vinyl off the hood.

Find a compass of the same color/ year and offer to trade with a non-TH owner, 95% of them would be all over this!
 
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