Tata reacts to Jeep Compass; marketing strategy or knee jerk reaction?
It has been just yesterday when Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) India’s President and Managing Director,Kevin Flynn, had announced the launch of the brand’s make or break SUV Jeep Compass in a grand media event in Film City, Mumbai. For the brand, Jeep Compass is all that stands between success and a permanent failure. If this product does not click, it would be hitting the brand’s very survival in India.
The company is aware of that and that can be seen by the way Fiat Chrysler India has priced its Made in India Jeep Compass. The vehicle’s petrol powered version comes at a starting price of Rs 14.95 lakh (ex showroom -Delhi), while the diesel fuelled variant has a starting price of Rs 15.45 lakh. The attractive pricing has impressed many of the Jeep’s fans in India and has garnered a tremendously positive response. But, we guess, it has also sent shiver down the spine of few of its competitors.
Tata Motors has already prepared a comparo material, which we guess is for its dealerships to be prepared for any cross questioning by their prospective customers and convince them away from the Jeep Compass and lure towards Tata Hexa.
The first page of the material reads, ” Takes your anywhere. No Compass required”. The inference against the Jeep Compass can definitely be not overlooked. The material further has a complete comparision spec by spec on how Tata Hexa is the “better” of the two and how it trumps the Jeep Compass under every single heading. Tata definitely has a point when it compares Hexa’s bigger engine and the availability of diesel automatic to that of Jeep Compass. The Jeep Compass makes do with a lesser torque and has an automatic available only in its petrol avatar. Space wise too, Tata Hexa boasts of much bigger dimensions and its capability to carry seven people in relative comfort to that of a strictly five seater Jeep Compass is its trump card.
Fret not Jeep Compass, as its relatively smaller footprint and a powerful enough diesel mill makes it quite a capable performer on road and especially off-road. The smaller wheelbase and efficient 4×4 gear should help Jeep Compass stay true to its off-roading DNA and our road test has mirrored the same.
While Tata Hexa might have a few tricks up its sleeve, the very reason that it should come out with a comparison to a competitor which does not have much pan Indian presence and backed by a puny company shows that the Jeep Compass is more than “what it meets in the eye” and Tata is aware of that.
That very reason proves that Compass is off to a winning start paving way for an healthy competition and only you, our readers, can confirm whether this tactic from Tata is more of a knee jerk reaction or a calculated marketing strategy against a capable competitor. Only time will tell!