Company looking to push volumes in emerging markets like Brazil, China and India.
According to ET Auto, Jeep is mulling over a compact SUV priced under INR 10 Lakhs that will rival sub-4m SUVs Ford EcoSport and Maruti Vitara Brezza. If the SUV is green lit by parent company, India is likely to be a production hub of the right-hand-drive Jeep B-SUV.
Speaking to the newspaper, Mike Manley, head of the Jeep brand, said the Jeep B-SUV will be positioned “on top of the EcoSport" and characteristics will be “very close" to the Ford vehicle. For the SUV, Mr Manley is open to exploring a partnership with Tata Motors, which is also developing a sub-4m SUV - Tata Nexon. Tata Motors and FCA make compact cars at a common factory in Ranjangaon, which has been modified with USD 280 million investment to roll out Jeeps from next year.
The Jeep B-SUV is rumored to be based off the Fiat X6H platform, which is an evolution of the 326 platform that underpins South American Fiats like the Palio and Siena.
Jeep India is currently working on introducing the Jeep Compass in the country, the brand's first locally manufactured SUV. Trial production will kick off next year, and the car will begin rolling out in Q2 2017. The Compass could be offered with the 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol and 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel engines, both available with manual and automatic gearboxes.
Also Read: Jeep Wrangler petrol, Jeep Grand Cherokee petrol on sale next month – Report
Currently, Jeep sells the Grand Cherokee and Wrangler in India. Both are imported via the CBU route and help establish the Jeep brand in the country.
[Source: ET Auto]