Motoring

Jeep Meridian launched

Jeep launches the much-awaited Meridian in India, with prices starting from ₹ 29.90 lakh, and going up to ₹ 36.95 lakh for the top-spec 4x4 variants. Bookings for the Jeep Meridian are already underway, and deliveries are set to commence from the third week of June. The Meridian is based on the Compass platform, but has been completely reworked to accommodate a third row of seats.

Jeep has priced the Meridian pretty competitively as its starting price undercuts its immediate rival — the Skoda Kodiaq — by a whopping ₹ 5 lakh. It is also about ₹ 50,000 cheaper at the top-end. The starting price of the Meridian is also ₹ 4.39 lakh and ₹ 4.59 lakh cheaper than the Fortuner diesel and the MG Gloster, respectively. 

However, the Meridian will only be available with a 170hp, 350Nm, 2.0-litre four-cylinder Multijet turbo-diesel engine that is mated to either a six-speed manual or a nine-speed torque converter automatic gearbox. While the powertrain configuration is identical to the Compass, the engine has been recalibrated and gets a remapped ECU for specific application on the Meridian.

Just like its smaller sibling, the Meridian gets four-wheel drive only with the automatic gearbox, while the 4x2 variants are available with both the manual and auto gearbox. A petrol engine is likely to join the line-up later.

The Meridian looks unmistakably a Jeep, drawing design inspiration from the larger Grand Cherokee L and Grand Wagoneer sold overseas. It also looks noticeably different from the Compass. For more details on the Meridian’s styling, you can check out our review here.

In terms of dimensions, the Meridian measures 4,769mm in length, 1,859mm in width, 1,682mm in height and has a wheelbase of 2,794mm – that is 364mm longer, 41mm wider and 48mm taller than the Compass, with the wheelbase having grown by 146mm.

The Meridian will be available in two trims — Limited and Limited (O) — where the top-spec Limited (O) model is pretty generously equipped. It gets a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, 10.1-inch touchscreen with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless charging, powered front seats, dual-zone climate control, powered tailgate, panoramic sunroof and more; most of which has been carried over from the Compass. It, however, misses out on ventilated seats, front-parking sensors and ADAS functionality, which particularly stand out at this price point.

As for the interior, not much has changed over the Compass, except for a new brown-black interior colour scheme, a new quilted pattern for the seat upholstery, and more importantly, the addition of a third row. The Meridian, for now, will only be available as a seven-seater, although a six-seater variant could be in the pipeline for the future.

The monocoque-bodied Meridian’s only logical rival in India is the Skoda Kodiaq, although for its price and all-wheel drive capabilities, it will also face competition from full-size ladder frame SUVs like the Toyota Fortuner and MG Gloster.


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Printable version | May 21, 2022 6:46:21 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/motoring/jeep-meridian-launched/article65442078.ece