Jeep is planning to expand its product portfolio and better equip its line by bringing more vehicles to India like the updated Grand Cherokee and the Wrangler, but the more affordable Jeep Compass which is locally manufactured tops the sales chart in the brand’s line up. To keep up the sales, FCA is likely to commission two new SUVs for the Indian market. The B-SUV that will sit below the Compass and a D-SUV that will be above the Compass and is expected to be a 7-seater SUV which will compete with the Skoda Kodiaq, Ford Endeavour and the Toyota Fortuner.
According to a media report, the three-rowed product is likely to be codenamed ‘Low D’ and will don a monocoque chassis and is expected to share a lot of product components from the Jeep Compass. The D-SUV is likely to be a longer form of the Jeep Compass and is likely to be named Grand Compass or Compass Long. The D-SUV is also likely to get off-road capabilities and will not compromise on the ‘Jeep DNA’.
On the other hand, the compact SUV will be codenamed Jeep 526 and is likely to be smaller than the current renegade. The B-SUV is likely to be built on the Fiat Panda 4×4 platform and is likely to get real off-road capabilities and be a true trail rated machine.
Both the new models are likely to be manufactured locally to keep the costs in check. It is also being speculated that the new above-mentioned model could be exported to other markets too. Presently, the Jeep Compass is produced at the brand’s Ranjangoan facility near Pune and the original capacity of 1,60,000 units is likely to be increased to 2,40,000 units.
The Jeep brand started off well in the premium segment with just one product but the downtrend in the market caught up with the brand and in Fiscal 2019, volumes fell 17% and the sales figures for FCA India Automobile was down to 16,000 units from 19,358 units that the brand sold in Fiscal 2018 and the pressure continues in the FY-2020.