Jeep bets on all-new Commander to add volume in China

Commander 1When Sergio Marchionne said that Jeep posted “XXX” results in Europe in 2017, analysts started to look for the reasons of this timid growth. Jeep competes in the hottest selling segment but it didn’t make use of the booming demand as its range wasn’t competitive enough. Jeep aims to sell 1,9 million units by the end of this decade but the brand needs to address some product issues first.

Commander 2European situation can be an example of how growth can be affected by the lack of new cars, with consequences not only in Europe but also in other markets. China is one of them.  It was already Jeep’s second largest market after USA in 2017, and is set to become the main source of growth in the coming years. Jeep is by far the most popular brand of FCA in China thanks to its SUV range and to the enormous popularity of SUVs among consumers.

Commander 5The brand has just revealed the all-new Commander, which is part of its strategy of enlarging sales through more products. This new Jeep is not just another launch but something more. It is the first Jeep exclusively developed and conceived for the Chinese market. The Commander aims to expand Jeep’s success in China by sitting above the Grand Cherokee in terms of size and capacity.

Commander 3It is the fourth locally-produced Jeep after the Renegade, Compass and Cherokee. Even if it is bigger than the Grand Cherokee, its entry price is half the price of the Grand Cherokee. This is because Jeep wants to position the Commander as the full-size SUV which is not necessarily associated to luxury. The new entry is set to rival with the Volkswagen Teramont (aka Atlas), Buick Enclave and GAC Trumpchi GS8.

Commander 4Sales for the 7-seater mainstream big SUVs are soaring in China. Last year there were around 260.000 units sold, jumping from 25.000 units in 2016. The strong growth is explained by the latest arrivals, which have met the needs of consumers in China. Another fact that positively affects the segment is related to a more relaxing unique-child policy. Size of families in China are expected to grow in some regions and this will have an impact on the size of cars.

Commander 6So far nothing has been announced regarding the Commander’s commercialization outside China. FCA has said it is a Chinese made product for local market, but the brand could use this model as the base for developing a dedicated model for North America. In fact, Jeep’s range in North America also needs a bigger SUV than the Grand Cherokee. An American version of the Commander could perfectly face competitors such as the Chevrolet Tahoe or Honda Pilot.

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12 responses to “Jeep bets on all-new Commander to add volume in China

  1. It’s a new large body on a Cherokee frame …. doesn’t have real 4WD capability and the engines are too small… it’s just a cash cow

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    • Well if that’s the case why not,they need the money,but I would also like to see a US version sold here.

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      • I wish I could Felipe… it meant i had access to “inside information” or ” non public databases” like you 🙂
        I was just pointing out out that the PHEV version is a significant “premiére” in Jeep porfolio – the first one and straight to China!

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  2. Great idea, wrong badge, should be a RAM, competing with the GMC, or Dodge competing with Tahoe.
    Jeep does need to move upmarket toward LR Discovery, keeping Wrangler as competitor to Defender.
    The space left would enable RAM, Dodge, Chrysler to fill in with more SUVs.

    RAM hard working range, Toyota LandCruiser.

    Dodge mainstream unibody

    Chrysler OnRoaders

    Jeep full range subpremium aiming at LR; Compass (new Freelander), Cherokee (Discovery Sport), Grand Cherokee (Discovery). Both Cherokees should be 7 seaters.
    Wrangler: full range of true off-roaders

    FIAT BSUV 500X renamed as 600X to give better understanding of size.

    Maserati SUV range taking over Stelvio and new electric SUV.

    Alfa sports SUV, think Lexus small SUV, just been demoed.

    Ferrari SUV, aiming at Aston DBX.

    This would give a huge range of SUV, that could share platforms, and provide massive sales for FCA.

    Even bringing back Lancia as a full size SUV to compete against Bentayga, could be possible of the Levante platform.

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  3. Nice entry mate. Opinions in the market still depends on the consumers taste. How about it’s dependability and stability. Hey, let’s follow, and share each other to grow together. Thanks!

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  4. Pingback: 4 years after Investor day’s plan, FCA meets 40% of its product launches target | Fiat Group's World·

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