Upon launch, Jeep Meridian will be rivaling other premium three-row SUVs such as Toyota Fortuner, MG Gloster and Skoda Kodiaq
Fiat Chrysler Automobile (FCA) has been testing the upcoming seven-seat SUV based on Jeep Compass for more than a year. Internationally, this SUV goes by the name Commander and made its global debut in August 2021. However, when launched in India, the SUV is likely to be retailed by the brand name ‘Meridian’.
Jeep Compass 7 Seater Spied
A test mule of Jeep Meridian was recently spied ahead of its launch slated for mid-2022. The heavily camouflaged prototype of Meridian was spotted alongside Toyota Innova Crysta. This gives us a fair bit of indication of its size. From the looks of it, Innova and Meridian appear to have similar proportions.
During its unveiling, Jeep had revealed its official dimensions. The seven-seater SUV measures 4769mm long, 1859mm wide, 1682mm tall and offers a wheelbase of 2794mm. In addition, it offers a ground clearance of 214mm (unladen). Despite heavy camouflage, certain elements of Meridian’s exterior were clearly visible.
For instance, Meridian flaunts a signature 7-slat grille upfront with chrome accents flanked by rectangular full LED headlamps on both sides with integrated LED DRLs. The muscular bumper houses circular LED fog lamps and a metallic bash plate.
A chrome trim runs across the front fascia giving it a premium appeal. At the side profile, the Roofline slopes gently backward whereas squarish wheel arches with black claddings give Meridian a rugged appearance.
Since it offers a longer wheelbase than Compass, it benefits from larger rear doors for easier ingress and egress, especially for third-row occupants. Stretched-out rear quarter glass panels and extended rear overhangs also indicate a third-row of seats. The rear end features a flat tailgate and sleek LED taillights which are reminiscent of the flagship Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Test mules of Meridian were seen rolling on 18-inch blacked-out alloy wheels which enhanced the SUVs sporty look. Other notable exterior highlights include black ORVMs with LED turn indicators and a muscular bonnet. Interiors of Meridian is in line with the facelifted models of its 5-seat sibling as it features the same dashboard layout and premium upholstery.
Features & Engine Specs
The cabin will be loaded with all kinds of creature comforts such as a 10.1-inch free-standing touchscreen infotainment system, 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, a panoramic sunroof, electrically adjustable front seats, a hands-free tailgate, wireless charger, dual-zone climate control and much more. For superior comfort, the second and third-row of seats benefit from a recline function.
The international-spec Commander gets two engine options- a 1.3-litre turbo petrol mill and a 2.0-litre Multijet diesel unit, both borrowed from Compass. The India-spec Meridian is expected to be offered with a sole 2.0-litre Multijet diesel engine albeit in a higher state of tune. This motor should be offered with a 6-speed manual as well as a 9-speed torque converter automatic gearbox.