2008 Jeep Patriot SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Jeep Patriot SUV

We didn't find any results. You can try changing your zip code, or check another model year.

We found matches for you!

Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Jeep Patriot Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.4 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 173 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 23/28 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2008 Jeep Patriot

  • Although an adequate urban runabout, the 2008 Jeep Patriot is outclassed by most other small SUVs when it comes to performance, cabin quality and overall refinement.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Affordable pricing, lots of headroom, Jeep styling, above-average off-road ability.

  • Cons

    Performance-robbing CVT, some mediocre interior materials, minimal cargo capacity.

  • What's New for 2008

    Jeep's Patriot compact crossover SUV enters its second year with a handful of minor changes, including standard air-conditioning, AutoStick manual shifting added to the continuously variable transmission (CVT), reshuffled package content and a few chrome bits to dress up the interior. Limited models can also be equipped with an optional navigation system.

Full 2008 Jeep Patriot Review

What's New for 2008

Jeep's Patriot compact crossover SUV enters its second year with a handful of minor changes, including standard air-conditioning, AutoStick manual shifting added to the continuously variable transmission (CVT), reshuffled package content and a few chrome bits to dress up the interior. Limited models can also be equipped with an optional navigation system.


The compact SUV display has gotten pretty crowded at your local Jeep store, with the traditional Patriot and stylized Compass car-based crossovers joining the larger and pricier second-generation Liberty. Similar to the old Cherokee in appearance, the 2008 Jeep Patriot is a familiar-looking four-door Jeep wagon meant to be the tougher and more off-roadable version of the brand's two entry-level SUV models. When properly equipped with "Trail Rated" four-wheel-drive components, the Patriot ends up being one of the best small crossover SUVs in terms of off-road capability.

If you're inclined to play in the dirt, there are two four-wheel-drive versions to choose from: the standard "Freedom Drive I" setup with a lockable active full-time system for winter-weather use, and an available "Freedom Drive II" off-road package with an elevated ride height and low-range gearing for true terrain-conquering capability. Those less concerned with venturing far from city lights can save some money and opt for a front-wheel-drive Patriot and still enjoy Jeep's classic, squared-off appearance.

The Patriot's base price has increased since last year, but now includes a number of enhancements plus standard air-conditioning -- which you'd probably spring for anyway. Inside, the Patriot is a bit more dressy and functional with a new dark gray interior option, additional chrome accents and some new features. The interior is still one of this vehicle's biggest drawbacks, however, as it suffers from low-grade materials and subpar cargo capacity.

If you're looking for an affordable compact runabout and are sold on rugged Jeep looks and off-road potential, the 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport would be your best bet. In the same price range, however, those who find these attributes negotiable may want to check out the Hyundai Tucson and Kia Sportage twins, which trade some off-road functionality for larger interiors and more extensive basic warranty coverage. Likewise, if you don't travel off pavement and are looking to spend a few thousand more on a Patriot Limited, there are more polished rivals from Honda, Toyota and Subaru to consider with greater overall refinement, on-road performance and cargo capacity. On the domestic side, Ford's Escape has tough new exterior styling and a revamped interior worth checking out. In other words, if "Trail Rated" isn't a quality that's high on your list, you can do yourself a favor by skipping over the Patriot.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Jeep Patriot compact SUV is available in base Sport and upmarket Limited trims. The Sport is pretty basic with 16-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, cruise control and a CD/MP3 player with an auxiliary audio jack. Moving up to the more luxurious Limited gets you 17-inch aluminum wheels, foglights, privacy glass, chrome exterior accents, leather trim, heated front seats, a fold-flat front passenger seat, reclining 60/40-split rear seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. A 115-volt outlet, full power accessories, cruise control and remote keyless entry also come standard. Many of the Limited's features are available on the Sport as individual or packaged options.

Both trims can be equipped with a sunroof, a six-disc CD changer and a Boston Acoustics premium audio system with satellite radio and flip-down speakers in the liftgate. On four-wheel-drive models, an off-road package with skid plates, a low-range ratio for CVT-equipped vehicles, hill descent control and an additional inch of ground clearance is available. The Limited model also qualifies for a navigation system and hands-free phone connectivity.

Powertrains and Performance

Most Jeep Patriots are powered by a 2.4-liter inline four-cylinder engine with 172 horsepower and 165 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and a CVT is optional. Buyers can choose either front- or all-wheel-drive configurations. Front-wheel-drive Sport models with the optional CVT can also be equipped with a smaller and less expensive 158-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder.

When equipped with the CVT, the Patriot accelerates sluggishly compared with other compact SUVs, and the lack of fixed ratios keeps the revs on a noisy boil. The power delivery feels more energetic and linear with the manual gearbox, which would be our choice. Fuel economy for an AWD model with the CVT checks in for 2008 at 21 mpg city/24 mpg highway.


Antilock brakes, traction control, stability control with roll-over mitigation and head curtain airbags are all standard Patriot features. Front-seat side-impact airbags are optional on both trims. The 2008 Jeep Patriot earns four stars out of five for driver protection and a perfect five stars for the front passenger in government frontal crash testing. In side-impact tests, it receives a five-star protection rating for both front and rear passengers.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Patriot's cabin features large gauges and simple controls but is ultimately defined by a sea of hard, low-quality plastic and inconsistent fit and finish. The front seats are well cushioned, but an overly high beltline and dash, combined with the lack of a telescoping steering wheel, makes for an awkward driving position, especially for shorter adults. Those of taller stature will appreciate this SUV's voluminous headroom, however.

For camping trips and tailgate parties, the optional premium sound system features unique liftgate-mounted speakers that rotate and direct the sound toward the great outdoors. The Jeep's removable and easy-to-clean cargo floor is another nice touch, but the Patriot's maximum cargo capacity is disappointing at just over 54 cubic feet.

Driving Impressions

Although 172 hp is adequate output for a four-cylinder engine, the Patriot feels sluggish during merging and passing maneuvers, especially when equipped with 4WD and the CVT. In addition, full-throttle acceleration results in the CVT holding the engine's rpm at redline, at which point both four-cylinders make an irritating racket.

Once underway, the 2008 Jeep Patriot shows some body roll, but overall the Patriot takes corners confidently with a firm and controlled ride. With the off-road package, the Patriot lives up to its "Trail Rated" moniker thanks to generous (9.0-inch) ground clearance and a low-range gear that allows it to tame trails and hills that would be off-limits to most competitors in its class. If you're that serious about off-roading, however, you'd probably be better off with Jeep's own Liberty, or upping the ante for a more purpose-built and proven machine like the Wrangler, Nissan Xterra or Toyota FJ Cruiser.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

Got lucky i guess

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

Why won't Edmunds let me select a Patriot Sport 4x4 CVT? After reading all the bad reviews on this car I thought I'd share my experience with our 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4x4 CVT. My wife purchased this car by herself brand new in December of 2007 and it currently has 93,000 miles. She wanted AWD and decent gas milage and liked that the Jeep Patriot came with a lifetime power-train warrantee. When I met my future wife, the car was a little over a year old so I've had a lot of experience driving it and dealing with the problems.

Maybe i got the only

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

I have read a number of negative reviews on this car. I bought mine new, in December of 2008. I have been driving it exclusively since then. I log about 25,000 miles a year. They gave me a first owner only lifetime or 1,000,000 mile warranty and I have often wondered why. This car is like the energizer bunny and I love it!

New 2014 patriot and problems

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

My husband went golfing today in his NEW Jeep Patriot and when he started to come back home (less than 200 miles total on the car) the Jeep would not shift into first or second gears! Already we have had it into the dealership for repairs! Not at all what we expected when we bought a NEW vehicle from Jeep! It appears that the clutch cable 'came loose' and had to be reattached! HOW can that happen??? I hope this is NOT a pattern or we will be extremely unhappy - and since we are Jeep lovers, this would NOT be good! My son has 2 Grand Cherokees - VERY happy with them, and we also have a Jeep Liberty - which I drive and dearly love! PLEASE JEEP - keep our faith in your company! FIX IT!

Highly defective substandard suv

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

We bought the 2008 Patriot new for $25k and within a few months endured unjustifiable anxiety for unrelenting warranty repairs on an inferior made cheap product. First and last time Jeep buyers, the 5-speed manual transmission went through 4+ major warranty repairs: clutch, transmission, defects, gear box, ball bearings, etc. It had to be towed a few times to the car lot. We lost value and money in a headache suv that was highly defective and unreliable and dismissed trips too. Very poor car, dealership, head office and managers. Stacks of warranty repair files amplifies our deserved poor rating of the car and all involved.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

Terrible with a dash of

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

First off, I have to agree with everyone here that this is a terrible Jeep. Now, I bought my 2008 Patriot 4x4 Sport with the automatic CVT and 2.4L in New Mexico used in 2010 with about 40k on it. Two days after I bought it, the transmission overheated. They tried to blame it on the fact that the tires didnt match. The front and rear were different profile sized. So, I called them retarded and made them service the transmission by changing the fluid and filter and give me a set of new tires. About 3 months went by. Same thing transmission overheated at 70mph on the highway in the middle of no where. Had to sit in the hot sun for about 3 hours for it to cool down.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Do not buy

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Jeep Patriot Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (2.4L 4cyl 5M)

I have a 2008 Jeep Patriot with 58,000 miles. I have to replace the transmission and ball joints for total cost of $4700. The 2000 Jeep Patriot has a 5 year or 100,000 mile warranty but it is not transferable to this 2nd owner. I have talked to Jeep but with no success. If you check out the internet you will see that is a typical problem with the Jeep Patriot and Compass. Save yourself a lot of money and aggravation do not buy this vehicle.

Talk About The 2008 Patriot

2008 Jeep Patriot Discussions See all Started By

As far as I know, there is $2750 in dealer cash on 2007 Patriots. 2008 models have $500 custer rebate plus $2000 VIN-specific (I think the VIN specific is a farce and all 2008 Patriots get the $2k). ...

I have a Patriot 2008 2X. Last week I had a light on (the engenie) I went with the dealer and they gave app two day later. At the next day the light went off, I call and they told me it was the gas t...

Don't get to excited, this diesel for the 2008 Liberty may be just for Europe, not the USA. Remember that 2007 Compass and Patriot will get a diesel this year, but only for Europe. Time will tell, bu...

Gas Mileage


  • 23
  • cty
  • 28
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
Have a question? We're here to help!
Chat online with us
Email us at help@edmunds.com
*Available daily 8AM-5PM Pacific
Call us at 855-782-4711
Text us at ED411