Auto Sector Veteran Italian-American company Fiat Chrysler Automobile (FCA) has approved a top-of-the-line SUV for 2020-2021 to keep people’s interest in the Indian market. The 7-seater SUV will be launched under the Jeep brand and it will be placed above the Compass SUV.
This new SUV will compete with the Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour, Mahindra Ultras and Honda CRV in the market. According to the sources information this SUV will be built in the Rajangaon plant located at the outskirts of Pune city. This SUV will be launched in the second half of 2020 or in the first half of 2021 in the market.
As per an employee of the company aware of the approval plan for the above-mentioned project stated that the project has got its approval. This will be the only version of the new compass being made for 2020. The Company will also launch a compact version of the Jeep in a few years. However, the company wants to keep Jeep’s premium positioning strongly in the market by launching vehicles like TrailHawk, Compass and now the vehicles will be like Grand Compass or Compass Long.
The Jeep brand, which was launched with the Compass SUV in mid-2017, got good response in the Indian market. However, due to the slowdown in the market and competition in the premium SUV segment in 2018-19, the sales started decreasing. Even the Jeep’s export volume also started to decrease which was much lower than the Company’s expectation. In the Financial year of 2019, FCA India’s sales fell by 17% to 16,000 units compared to 19,358 units in 2018. There is a pressure on sales in the market in the financial year 2020, due to the sluggish market.
However, the company is trying to attract customers with limited versions such as TrailHawk. After the launch of Compass, the company was preparing to launch an SUV in the B segment named Renegade, but later this plan was postponed.
According to a source the company is focusing on maintaining the premium positioning of Jeep brand and products with higher margin products rather than volume. The FCA launched Top-Of-The-Line TrailHawk last month.