Jeep Patriot Origins
The Jeep patriot is mainly known for its offroad ability, an area that other crossover makers often ignore.
The exterior of the Patriot is very familiar, sharing many of the same design features as the old Jeep Cherokee. In reality, the Patriot has most of the underpinning of the less popular Jeep Compass, which is not considered an offroad vehicle. The Patriot is able to handle steeper angles than the Compass because of a different ground clearance, a low-gear setting that allows for extra traction, and optional skidplates and other offroad accessories.
The Jeep Patriot is unfortunately stuck between the desires of different car buyers. Low sticker price requires certain sacrifices. The Jeep Patriot is a good inexpensive option for young or budget buyers, but feels largely outdated and underwhelming. The interior and cargo space is quite cramped, a characteristic it shares with the Compass; fuel economy isn’t impressive; and the engine lags behind the competition's offerings. About the Jeep Patriot
The current Jeep Patriot is available in the Sport, Latitude and Limited models.
The entry-level Sport's standard features include 16-inch steel wheels, fog lamps, a roof rack, side rails, outside temperature display, and a tilt-only steering wheel. Cloth upholstery covers the seats. The back seat has a 60/40 split that improves the storage-area limitations of the Patriot, but without fully solving the problem. The entertainment system includes a CD player, audio jack, and four speakers. A Power Value Group package option adds keyless entry, heated mirrors, and other power accessories.
The Latitude includes all the features of the Sport. The 16-inch wheels are swapped out for 17-inch alloy wheels. Remote ignition, heated front seats, height-adjustable driver’s seat, fold-flat passenger seats, and reclining rear seats are added as well.
The top-of-the-line Limited model adds a different engine, four-wheel disc brakes, automatic climate control, leather, satellite radio, and a better sound system.
The Sport and Latitude versions of the Patriot have a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 158 horsepower with 141 lb-ft of torque. A CVT option is available. A five-speed manual transmission is standard.
All trim lines also have the option of a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 172 horsepower with 165 lb-ft of torque. The engine also has the Freedom Drive I all-wheel-drive system. A Freedom Drive II system is also available as an option, which makes low-range running easier, and improves the offroad driving experience.
Both engines struggle to make an impression. Even the 2.4-liter engine has limited acceleration capability. With an acceleration time of zero to 60 mph in around 10 seconds, the Patriot lags behind its competition.
Safety features on the vehicle include anti-lock brakes, stability control, active front headrests, double airbags, and side-curtain airbags. Front-side seat airbags are also available on all vehicles as an added option. Braking on the vehicle is a bit scary, however; the vehicle stops on average 20 feet longer than other vehicles in its class.
The interior is still cheap looking even after all the upgrades over the last couple of years. Hard plastics are everywhere. It looks more like a rental car than something that someone would want to drive every day. The interior space is cramped and the legroom in the back may be underwhelming for adult passengers, although it's just fine for child passengers.
The controls are user friendly and easy to read. The LED lamps in the vehicle pop out and become a flashlight, a clever and novel addition.Jeep Patriot Evolution
The first-generation Patriot was introduced in 2007. The interior is dominated by cheap plastic that makes it feel like a rental car. In 2009, after fairly consistent criticism about the interior, Jeep introduced a number of improvements.
The engine was also a problem with the first generation. Even in 2010, the engine produced 158 horsepower. Starting in 2012, it was paired with a five-speed manual transmission for better performance.
In 2011, styling changes were made to the exterior, interior trim was improved yet again, and the steering and suspension system received an upgrade that further improved the vehicle’s offroad ability.