Earlier this year, at the launch of the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler Unlimited, FCA India had confirmed that the first locally made Jeep (the C-SUV a.k.a. 556) will roll out from Ranjangaon facility in 2017. This will be in the form of Jeep Compass, which made global debut last month.
Interestingly, Jeep India is also working on an even smaller B-segment derivative to be primarily made in India. Codenamed Jeep 526, the B-SUV is likely to be a sub-4 m crossover which will have mass market products like Maruti Vitara Brezza, and Ford EcoSport in its sights.
The company is hoping to leverage the Make-in-India campaign as far as the C- and B-SUVs are concerned. According to Economic Times’ sources, the Jeep 526 would be a mini Renegade and will be targeting select markets like India. It will also be exported to several RHD markets.
The Jeep B-SUV is reportedly being benchmarked against a product from a higher segment. Market positioning will be a notch higher than the mainstream sub-4 crossovers but Jeep will pack its product with best-in-class features to justify the premium tag.
ET also reports that the company is planning annual volumes of 40,000 – 50,000 units from the B-SUV including exports. The vehicle is expected to have a starting price of INR 10 lakhs.
Meanwhile, Jeep India will inaugurate 10 outlets in 9 cities across India by the end of this year.
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