FCA is now putting everything its got behind the Compass and rightly so because as a product the Compass is indeed impressive and without doubt the most awaited launch of the year. The Compass will lay the foundation of Jeep expansion in India and that will be the perfect platform for the smaller Renegade to come in later. Full production will start from July and it will come to dealerships across India during the third quarter of 2017.
Thus the launch and bookings are some time away but the buzz is only getting stronger. As far as we are concerned FCA has got it right. With heavy investments at its Ranjangaon manufacturing facility, the Compass will have high levels of localization. That will help price it competitively and that is the key. No matter how good a product, wrong pricing will hamper its chances of success. The engine options are spot on with 160+ HP, 250 Nm Multi-air petrol and the 170+ HP, 350 Nm, diesel while the petrol will have an automatic with the diesel AT coming in later.
There will be over 50 different trim, powertrain, transmission and colour combinations along with a lot of safety equipment means no corners have been cut anywhere too. Crucially being a Jeep, its core DNA has been kept with 4x4 and Selec Terrain Traction Management System. Thus with the Compass, it will stray away from crossovers and will offer something others do not. Overall the Compass, especially with its expected sub-Rs 20 lakh pricing, seems to be an accomplished product. We will be driving it soon but without doubt this would be the turning point for FCA India and while it is betting big on one car, it has got it quite right this time.