Jeep Compass launched in India; base variant priced at a superb ₹14.95 Lakhs

After months of testing our patience, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) finally launched the much-awaited Jeep Compass in India today. Priced between 14.95 Lakhs and 20.65 Lakhs ex-showroom Delhi, Jeep’s first ‘Made in India’ product sports an aggressive price tag, especially the entry-level variant.

Available in three trim levels – Sport, Latitude and Limited, the Compass targets a wide spectrum of customers and price points. Two engines, a petrol and diesel, are on offer. While both are turbocharged, the former is a 1.4-liter TwinAir mill that generates 162 horsepower and 250 Nm of torque and the latter, a 1.20-liter MultiJet II that churns out 173 horsepower and 350 Nm of torque. Transmission options include a 6-speed manual or a 7-speed dual clutch automatic gearbox, the latter only available on the petrol variants. Similarly, four-wheel-drive and Jeep’s famous Selec-Terrain traction system are available only on the top-end diesel variant. So, there goes your dream of owning a Compass diesel with automatic transmission and four-wheel-drive option down the drain!

The variant glitches aside, the Compass is a compelling proposition from Jeep. 

It’s major draw, obviously, is its appealing styling. Jeep’s designers got it spot on in terms of balancing the brand’s rich heritage and styling cues with the current trend in the market. The trademark seven-slat grille flanked by simply-yet-classy wraparound headlights look as smart as ever while the tall hood and the bumper gives the Compass a mini Grand Cherokee look. In profile, typical Jeep traits like the flared and squared-off wheel arches and bold stance make quite an impression as does the classy chrome-lining on top of the windows. The rear is a bit underwhelming in comparison but that’s no reason for complaint. The Compass looks like a proper SUV and you don’t have to hear the common ‘hatchback-on-stilts’ comment ever again if you own one. 

Interiors are well-designed albeit lacking a wee bit in terms of visual appeal. That said, the Compass is well-loaded. Standard across the range are dual airbags, Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Traction Control System (TCS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Electronic Parking Brake, Isofix child-seat anchors, Electronic Roll Mitigation, Hill Start Assist, touchscreen infotainment system with built-in compass, Voice Commands and BlueTooth functionality. remote keyless entry, all season tyres, customizable 3.5-inch Driver Information Display, Driver Seat Height Adjust, 60/40 split rear seat and front and rear arm rests. 

As we progress higher, features like push-button start, cornering lamps, roof rails, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, dual-zone automatic climate control, 17-inch alloy wheels, scuff plates, bigger 7.0-inch touchscreen display, reverse park assist with camera, side and curtain airbags and dual-tone roof are part of the kit amongst others. 

We hear Jeep has worked hard in terms of localizing critical bits and pieces in the Compass which helped in bringing down the launch price. If true, that should also help potential owners by lowering the cost of ownership as well. 

Jeep also launched the Mopar sub-brand that will be responsible for after-sales and service of the Compass. Of the 50 dealerships operational across the country right now, 48 are Mopar-ready as of now. The count is rapidly increasing as well.

With 5,000 bookings garnered even before the official price announcement, the Compass has given Jeep’s parent Fiat a new lease of life in India. The car-maker’s plant at Ranjangaon, Pune would not only be manufacturing the Compass for domestic requirements but also for all Right Hand Drive markets worldwide. 

Amidst an outcry of criticism on the ambitious pricing strategy adopted by Jeep when they debuted the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee in India, there was one ray of hope in the form of the ‘Made-in-India’ Compass. That hope has now come true. Jeep has delivered and it's time we Indians pay them back!

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