Jeep Meridian aims to marry rugged skills with classy looks. Here's how

Jeep Meridian three-row SUV is looking at offering  a perfect blend of drive capabilities with a cabin that is well equipped and looks that appeal.
By : Shubhodeep Chakravarty
| Updated on: 04 May 2022, 12:00 PM
Jeep Meridian will compete in the large SUV segment which is currently dominated by Toyota Fortuner.
Jeep Meridian will compete in the large SUV segment which is currently dominated by Toyota Fortuner.
Jeep Meridian will compete in the large SUV segment which is currently dominated by Toyota Fortuner.
Jeep Meridian will compete in the large SUV segment which is currently dominated by Toyota Fortuner.

Jeep Meridian is the latest large, three-row SUV that is set to make its debut in the Indian car market. To be manufactured at the Jeep plant in Ranjangaon, the Meridian is looking at replicated the success of the Compass that was first launched back in 2017. But while the Compass competes in the mid-size premium SUV segment, the Meridian is taking a straight aim at the likes of Toyota Fortuner and MG Gloster.

Powered by a 2.0-litre diesel engine that is also at the heart of the Compass, Meridian gets a 4x2 with six-speed manual, 4x2 with none-speed automatic and a 4x4 with nine-speed auto. But even though there is no petrol engine option on the vehicle, Jeep is confident of Merdiain striking a deep chord with prospective buyers. “When we envisaged this product, we focused on a distinct styling because customer expectations is not only on the performance but the vehicle should also look stunning," Nipun Mahajan, Jeep India Head, told HT Auto during an interaction. “Meridian offers that complete package."

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So while the Meridian may be based on the Compass, it is out and about to create its own identity, one that is not just defined by an additional row of seats. “Meridian is going to have a very large appeal and customers (in this segment) would want to be associated with the (Jeep) brand," Mahajan further highlights.

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Jeep is also backing the preference towards SUV body type to help the cause of Meridian. “We see that customers have a strong preference for SUVs as a product and who else is better to address that SUV demand other than Jeep which is known as the most capable SUV brand," he says. “Of course there will changes in the market. Customer preference will move towards different powertrains, and different category of vehicles, and as a portfolio we have a strong portfolio internationally and we will address changing customer preferences in India as well."

Bookings for the Meridian was opened recently at 50,000 and while the price launch is expected some time later this month, deliveries will commence from third week of June.

First Published Date: 04 May 2022, 12:00 PM IST
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