A Manual Fades From the Jeep Lineup
When you think of the rapidly dwindling handful of vehicles still available with a manual transmission, you probably didn’t list the Jeep Compass among those remaining holdouts. And yet the compact crossover does offer such a setup, ever since the current-generation model went on sale for 2017.
Well, Jeep offered, but not many buyers took them up on it. Actually, it seems Jeep could barely find any takers — which is why, for 2021, the Compass will carry only an autobox.
This news comes by way of CarsDirect, which noticed the six-speed manual missing from the 2021 Compass’ spec sheet. Offered as standard kit on the entry-level Sport (4×2 and 4×4) and step-up Latitude (4×4 only) trims, the stick shift paired with the standard 2.4-liter Tigershark four-cylinder.
Come ’21, the six- and nine-speed automatics already offered throughout the Compass range will fill the gap.
The reason for the transmission deep-sixing should be clear to anyone. No takers. Speaking to CarsDirect, Jeep spokesperson Amy Grundman said, with no shortage of understatement, “there wasn’t much of a demand for a manual transmission.”
Indeed there wasn’t. Poring through U.S. inventory listings, the publication noticed that less than 1 percent of existing Compasses carried a three-pedal arrangement, suggesting that the actual number of unsold stick-shift units out there number somewhere around 100. The Compass sold more than 144,000 units in the country last year.
Of course, this all means that getting into a base Compass next year will be pricier, though not for the vast majority of buyers who chose to outfit their Sport with an automatic, anyway. That option cost $1,500, which makes the base 2021 model’s MSRP of $25,390 (a $1,615 markup over 2020) pretty easy to swallow.
[Image: Fiat Chrysler]
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