Low entry price; standard manual transmission; real off-road capability with Freedom Drive II
Crude engines; unpleasant continuously variable transmission (CVT); poor acceleration with base engine; budget interior; elevated road noise; iffy crash-test scores
The 2015 Patriot is essentially unchanged for the 2015 model year.
Although the Freedom Drive II doesn't come cheap, it's the Patriot's clearest advantage over the competition. If off-roading is a pastime or necessity for you, consider trying this pumped-up Patriot on for size.
The 2015 Jeep Patriot is available in three main trim levels: Sport, Latitude or Limited. The Altitude and High Altitude are special-edition models that occupy a middle ground between Sport and Limited.
The Sport ($17,690) starts with 16-inch wheels, fog lights, cruise control, a tilt-adjustable steering wheel and a 4-speaker audio system with an auxiliary audio input. Remarkably, air conditioning is not standard, nor are power windows or locks. But they can be added for a fee.
The Altitude ($19,585) adds the CVT, 17-in black aluminum wheels and glossy black accents but is otherwise similarly equipped.
The Latitude ($21,090) classes things up with air conditioning, power accessories, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with auxiliary controls, heated front seats (including driver height adjustment), reclining rear seatbacks and a 115-volt power outlet.
The High Altitude ($24,670) adds a number of extras, including a sunroof, gray wheels, a power driver seat and leather upholstery.
The Limited ($25,690) tacks on the 2.4-liter engine (optional on other trims), silver wheels, bright roof rails, automatic climate control and an upgraded sound system with satellite radio.
Specifying the Freedom Drive I all-wheel-drive system on non-Limited trims inflates the bottom line considerably, because it also requires the 2.4-liter engine. Freedom Drive II is available at additional cost and adds simulated low-range gearing, skid plates, an oil cooler and other off-road-oriented driving aids. Also available are a touchscreen infotainment interface with digital music storage, a navigation system, a USB port, Bluetooth and premium Boston Acoustics audio (with flip-down tailgate speakers).
|Basic||3 Years/36,000 Miles|
|Drivetrain||5 Years/100,000 Miles|
|Corrosion||5 Years/Unlimited Miles|
|Roadside Assistance||5 Years/100,000 Miles|
2016 Mazda CX-5 -- The CX-5 is arguably the most rewarding compact crossover to drive on pavement, and its fuel economy puts the Patriot to shame.
Used Jeep Grand Cherokee -- If you poke around at enough Jeep dealers, you can find a lightly used Grand Cherokee V6 for the price of a well-equipped Patriot, and the larger JGC is a far better vehicle.