2017 Jeep Compass, Mazda3 Sedan vs. Dodge Dart and the Ask Nathan Video Update

2014 Dodge Durango
In this edition of Ask Nathan:

This first question comes from viewer who is wondering about a next generation Jeep Compass.


Hello Nathan and the TFL Car guys! I have a dilemma and I hope you can help.

I was looking at the Jeep Renegade and the current model Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot. I don’t need anything too expensive but I like the Jeep vibe and want something more entertaining than my Honda CR-V. I think the Jeep Renegade is okay, but it’s a bit too small for what I have in mind. The Patriot and Compass are small too, but I like their price.

The Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee are way too expensive for me. A friend at school who loves your show said that the Jeep Compass will be completely redone and will grow a bit too. Is this true? Will it be less expensive than the Cherokee?

Do you know anything about this Compass? Please let me know, I want to buy a new car by next summer or so.

Please tell Roman I said hi!

Mitch G.

Cleaton, KY

A: That’s a great question Mitch!

Please keep in mind: there is nothing solid out there yet. What you’re about to read is based on guesswork, rumor and very few facts. Still, we know that Jeep is planning something, if not a 2017 Jeep Compass.

I looked around and found out that Jeep is building a vehicle that should slot between the Renegade and Jeep Cherokee. Test vehicles are already on the road and there is said to be a debate about its name. Names like the Wagoner, Liberty, Scout and Compass have been rumored.

It may come out in 2017 after the Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot are discontinued. This vehicle may be part of a flood of crossovers that are built on the SCSS “BU” platform. This may include a three-row crossover and a utility pickup truck similar to the Honda Ridgeline.

I believe that, for now, the base model Jeep Renegade will remain the least expensive Jeep product.

We’ll see what tomorrow brings.



2013 Dodge Dart: Top 3 Unexpected Surprises

This next question is from a a fan who’s cross-shopping a Dodge Dart SXT vs Mazda3 Sedan i Touring.

Hi Nathan, I wanted to measure your opinion. I have narrowed my choices for my next car to two vehicles. I like the Dodge Dart SXT and Mazda3 Sedan i Touring.

Here’s what I know about each car.

Dodge Dart SXT:

It’s big for a small car
It’s very cheap, I can get one for nearly 15% under sticker (I think under $17,500 loaded)
I like the ride
You like it

Mazda3 Sedan i Touring:

A fun car to drive
Looks great inside and out
Has a good reputation and rating from you

I also know that you were disappointed with the Dodge Dart GT. You seem to know the good and bad with both vehicles. I wanted to know, if it were your money, which one would you buy?

I have a 7-year old and a girlfriend. No pets and I rarely go camping. I live just outside of Phoenix, Arizona, so good air conditioning is very important.

Do my questions make sense? Please let me know what you think.


Sage J.



A: Hi Sage!

Right off the bat, the Mazda3 is a more rewarding/fun car to drive.

It is the better choice unless you’re in need of more room and a quieter ride. You see, I know the Dodge Dart has its faults, but ride, comfort and noise control are not among them. In fact, if it were me, with my current needs (kids, dogs, utility needs etc.) I would still consider the Dodge Dart over the Mazda3.

As you already mentioned, the Dart is heavily discounted – which is true. Dealerships are cutting prices big time. While the Mazda3 is fairly affordable, it’s nowhere near the bargain the Dodge Dart is.

It all depends on what you truly want. Do you the fun car or the more practical one?

Practical = Dodge Dart

Fun = Mazda3

It’s just that simple.

Hope that helps!


The last post is in regards to TFLcar’s newest program: “Ask Nathan!” I know, it’s a bit self-glorifying, but it’s a name that’s easy to recognize – right?

MMUSA Nebraska Plaquea
Nathan next to the plaque marking the highest point in Nebraska

“Ask Nathan” Makes its video debut!

TFLcar’s newest program will be a weekly Q & A and behind-the-scenes show based on TFLcar.com’s “Ask Nathan” weekly column. This show will feature behind-the-scenes video displaying what’s in the TFL studio/garage and what the TFLcar/TFLtruck team is working on, and will also answer a few of your questions.

Ask Nathan will also pack a few surprises, contests and fun trivia too.

Cool, right?

Each episode will run three to six minutes and will have an occasional “special” guest too.

Excited yet?

I am!

Here’s the first episode:

Nathan and The Fast Lane Car team are here to answer your (reasonable) questions. Interesting and/or entertaining emails will be posted to this column. If it’s relevant in the automotive universe, there’s a chance we may know something about it. The author’s email address and name will be omitted – leaving your initials or nickname, your preference.

From day one, The Fast Lane Car has made it our policy to answer as many questions and comments as we can. We get thousands of emails and comments and feel that, as part of a tight-knit automotive community, having an open dialogue with you keeps things fresh and exciting.

Got a question for Nathan? Drop him a line at: asknathan@tflcar.com