New Delhi, January 27
Auto major Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) aims to expand its product portfolio in India and utilise its manufacturing base in the country to boost export to right-hand markets across the globe, a senior company official said on Wednesday.
The company, which on Wednesday launched the new version of its premium SUV Jeep Compass priced between Rs 16.99 lakh and Rs 28.29 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), also plans to completely localise Jeep lineup in India.
“The new Compass launched today is going to spearhead impressive lineup of new model launches in the very near future in India...it is our intention to introduce completely localised Jeep lineup to our Indian customers while supporting local industry and suppliers,” FCA Asia Pacific Vice President (Sales and Marketing) Billy Hayes told reporters in a virtual press conference.
India will also continue as a manufacturing hub for right-hand export markets, he added.
“The new Made in India Compass will launch shortly in Japan, Australia and New Zealand,” Hayes said.
FCA India manufactures the Jeep Compass at its joint venture manufacturing facility in Ranjangaon near Pune.
Hayes noted that its expansion in one of the world’s largest markets like India continues to fuel the company’s growth.
“India is an incredibly important market for FCA globally and within the Asia Pacific region the market is where we have invested the most,” he said.
In December, FCA had announced to invest USD 150 million (around Rs 1,103 crore) to set up a global digital hub in Hyderabad to help the group develop new technologies to cater to its automotive operations across the globe.
The facility, which is FCA’s largest digital hub outside of North America, would create nearly 1,000 jobs by the end of this year.
“So to summarise, more new products, increased localisation, right-hand drive manufacturing hub and 150 million USD investment, FCA will be stronger than ever before in India and we are here to stay,” Hayes noted.
FCA India also announced the launch of the 80th-anniversary limited edition of the model, priced between Rs 22.96 lakh and Rs 26.76 lakh.
The company said its dealerships will commence customer test drives and deliveries of the new Jeep Compass from February 2, 2021.
“The sophisticated package of the new Jeep Compass includes feedback from our customers and incorporates their suggestions. We have designed the new Compass to be more premium and customer-centric with a plethora of convenience and connected features,” FCA India Managing Director Partha Datta said.
The model now comes with completely new interiors and functional aspects, he added.
“We have right-sized our range and reconfigured our feature-packed variants to offer customers options with an optimal value proposition,” Datta noted.
The company has so far sold over 50,000 units of the Jeep Compass in the country besides exporting over 20,000 units of the made-in-India model to various right-hand markets, he added.
The front-wheel-drive (4x2) variants of the SUV are powered by a choice of two BS-VI compliant powertrains – 2-litre turbo-diesel (172 PS) and the 1.4-litre turbo-petrol (163 PS) mated with a 6-speed manual and 7-speed automatic transmission options.
Besides, the all-wheel-drive (AWD) trims of the model come with 2-litre turbo-diesel engine mated with nine-speed automatic and manual transmissions.
The UV now comes with all new interiors and various features like 10.1-inch high-definition display UConnect-5 system, which is five times faster than its previous generation and can accommodate over-the-air, real-time updates.
Other new features include a 360-degree remote camera, cruise control and a button-operated powerlift gate and automatic headlamps and rain-sensing wipers.
The SUV also comes with over 50 safety features like an electronic parking brake, hill hold and hill descent control, six airbags, panic brake assist, electronic roll mitigation, among others. — PTI
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