After owning Jeep products since 1991. When it came time for a new vehicle the Jeep was out because of the Cherokee's poor new look and gas mileage was suddenly a factor again. So, since I need the space of the Jeep and wanted AWD with reasonable gas mileage, I kept coming back to the Tribute/Escape/Mariner. A friend got a 2005 Tribute. Once I drove it, I knew this would be the only reasonable Jeep replacement. The Tribute, because of incentives, was the best price of the three. After a long search (AWD's are hard to find) one FINALLY showed up on my local dealer's lot with all the extras I wanted and I got it out the door for $25K. I couldn't be happier. Definitely made the right choice.
Handling #1. After driving Jeeps so long, the Tribute drives like a sportscar by comparison. #2 Interior space. In my job I need to carry various size loads. The Trib has almost as much USABLE space as the Jeep. #3 MPG. Although not great, vast improvement over Jeep.Good warranty, nice dealership.
Better engine/transmission combo. It could be a little torquier. Cloth interior is comfortable, but of questionable quality.