November 18, 2016 – The American SUV manufacturer, Jeep that recently launched the Wrangler and the Grand Cherokee in India, is now working on two highly localised SUVs. The two new SUVs are codenamed Jeep 526 and Jeep 556/551 and are being developed for B and C segments respectively. Michael Manley, COO Jeep Asia and Head of Jeep brand, confirmed that the American automaker is considering a compact SUV for growing markets including India. With this new compact SUV, Jeep aims to increase its market sales. This compact SUV will rival the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and the Ford EcoSport.
To keep its prices competitive, the company will produce the Jeep 526 at its Rajangaon based facility. Since the company aims to achieve aggressive pricing, most of its components will be sourced from India only. Jeep targets the price range of Rs 8 lakh to Rs 15 lakh.
The new SUV will be developed on a smaller platform, which would be positioned below the Renegade. The Jeep Renegade measures 4.2 metre in length, indicating that the new SUV would be less than 4 metre in length. The company might go for monocoque structure to give it an urban feel. However, the SUV will also get Jeep’s 4×4 drivetrain. The SUV could be developed on an entirely new platform or the American brand could source platform from existing Fiat cars.
Jeep 526 Price in India (Expected)
If Overdrive report is to be believed, the Jeep 526 B-segment SUV could come at a starting price of Rs 10 lakh. At this price, this sub-4 metre SUV will take on the likes of Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and Ford EcoSport. Similar to its rivals, this one might also be a front-wheel drive vehicle.
Jeep 526 India Launch
Since the 526 is only under discussion as of now, we don’t expect this one to come anytime before late 2018 or early 2019. The reason we say this is because of the fact that the company will have to design and develop the vehicle from scratch, and all of this will take at least 2-3 years.
Jeep 526 India Specifications
Though it’s too early to comment on its engine options, we expect the Jeep 526 to feature a downsized version of the 1.6-litre Multijet Diesel mill. Rumour had it that the company is working on a 1.5-litre MJD diesel mill for its upcoming vehicles. The 1.6-litre, in its current form, develops a maximum power output of 118bhp and 320Nm. The company sells the same engine to Maruti Suzuki India for the S-Cross.
As we reported earlier, the company is also working on a premium SUV – codenamed Jeep 551 – to take on the likes of Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour and other vehicles in the segment. This SUV too will be developed in India with high level of localisation to achieve aggressive pricing. This version might get both two-wheel drive and all-wheel drive options.
This is all what we have for now on the Jeep 526 compact SUV, stay tuned to IndiaCarNews for more updates on this.