Starting in MATLAB R2016a, there is a "polarplot" function that allows you to update the properties of the polar axes. Please see the following documentation pages for reference.
The ability to change the axis limits, ticks and labels for a compass or polar plot is not available previous releases. The following workaround were tested in MATLAB R2010b.
1) Changing the axis limits:
If (x,y) is the data to be plotted and the maximum axis limit is max_lim:
x = [1;3;-2];
y = [-3;-2;1];
max_lim = 10;
x_fake=[0 max_lim 0 -max_lim];
y_fake=[max_lim 0 -max_lim 0];
Please note that depending on the value of "max_lim", the actual limit may not be exact. For example, setting "max_lim = 0.14" will produce a axis limit of "0.15". The reason this happens is because the axis automatically rounds the limit to the nearest next minor grid. If this is not sufficiently close for your application, you may try manually changing the tick labels of the radial axis to give the correct appearance. Note that this will require you to adjust your data so the plot makes sense.
2) Removing/altering the degree-tick labels:
set(findall(gcf, 'String', '30', '-or','String','60') ,'String', ' ');
set(findall(gcf, 'String', '0'),'String', ' Zero');
set(findall(gcf, 'String', ' 4'),'String', ' Four');
Notice that in order to change radial ticks two additional spaces are required in the call to "findall" to find the radial strings. In other words, although the radial string appears to be "4", in reality the string is " 4".