Jeep Compass Petrol Discontinued, Could Make a Comeback with New-Gen Model in 2026

Jeep Ceases Production of Compass Petrol in India (Photo: Jeep)

Jeep Ceases Production of Compass Petrol in India (Photo: Jeep)

The discontinuation of the petrol engine is a blow for the Compass, as it accounted for 50-60 percent of the SUV’s sales in India

In a surprising move, Jeep has made the decision to discontinue the petrol variant of the Compass in India. The 1.4-litre turbo-petrol engine fails to meet the latest BS6 Phase 2 emissions norms, which took effect in April of this year. Jeep had already begun phasing out the petrol engine by discontinuing the manual variants in December 2022. Consequently, the petrol engine was only available with the DCT automatic gearbox, but even that has now been removed from showrooms.

As a result, the Compass will continue to be available exclusively as a diesel-powered SUV. This decision leaves Jeep without a petrol-engined model in the lower end of its portfolio, which is a significant gap to fill.

Globally, Jeep had already halted production of the 1.4-litre turbo-petrol engine due to stricter emissions regulations in other markets, such as South America and Europe. Most of these markets transitioned to the more efficient 1.3-litre turbo-petrol engine when the facelifted Compass was introduced in 2020. However, India remained one of the few markets still utilizing the 1.4-litre engine due to its compatibility with the BS6 Phase 1 emissions standards implemented at that time.

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The discontinuation of the petrol engine is a significant blow for the Compass in India, as it accounted for approximately 50-60 percent of its sales. In major cities like Delhi, where diesel is discouraged, the petrol variants constituted as much as 80 percent of total sales. On average, the Compass sells around 650 units per month, meaning the petrol variants contributed to 350-400 units sold each month.

From a business perspective, it is not financially viable to invest in upgrading an engine for such a small number of units, especially for a single market like India. Although the Compass is exported from India to international markets with a 2.4-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine, this engine is not suitable for the Indian market.

Jeep could have anticipated the stricter emissions norms and acted sooner. Ideally, they should have replaced the outgoing engine with the new 1.3-litre unit in India. However, this oversight should have been addressed during the product planning phase, which typically takes two to three years for a new powertrain to be approved and validated for launch in a new market.

The possibility of a petrol engine making a comeback in the Compass line-up in India seems unlikely until the next-generation model arrives in 2026. It is anticipated that the upcoming model will also feature an all-electric version.

Furthermore, in addition to discontinuing the petrol variants, Jeep has also halted production of the top-spec Trailhawk variant of the Compass, which was equipped with a 2.0-litre diesel engine and a 4×4 drivetrain. While the model has been removed from the Jeep India website, some dealers may still have limited unsold stock.

For the foreseeable future, the Compass and the Meridian, both significant models for the brand in India, will solely rely on a diesel engine. In contrast, the flagship Grand Cherokee and Wrangler models are powered by petrol engines. This leaves Jeep vulnerable in the mass-market segment, which is currently shifting away from diesel vehicles.

With the petrol variants contributing to a majority of the Compass’ sales, the discontinuation of the petrol engine is expected to have a substantial impact on the company’s overall volumes. Additionally, the Meridian has not achieved the level of success Jeep had hoped for, making the withdrawal of the petrol engine a particularly unfavorable move at this time.

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