FCA India eyes gains in Tier 2 markets with Jeep Connect, plans seven outlets by December

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 24 Oct 2018


With automobile sales in metro cities and also urban India moderating, vehicle manufacturers are now targeting car buyers in Tier 2 and 3 towns. FCA India, as part of its strategy to expand its retail and aftersales service presence in India, FCA has announced the rollout of ‘Jeep Connect’ outlets in India.

Jeep Connect essentially is a network expansion strategy to take the Jeep and Mopar brand experience closer to customers, particularly those located far away from the hubs of big cities. Jeep Connect outlets will offer sales as well as service and will be set up initially in seven Indian towns.

A Jeep Connect outlet will have a two-car display, the Jeep creative identity to offer the same, premium experience to customers and a Mopar workshop that will be equipped to fulfil jobs related to periodic maintenance. However, accident jobs will still be undertaken at FCA’s bigger workshops located in the city centres.

Earlier this month, FCA India inaugurated its first Jeep Connect outlet called Sky Moto Automobiles, at Bhumkar Chowk in Wakad, Pune. The company plans to open another six outlets by end-December 2018 in Rohtak, Ahmedabad, Muvthpuzha, Panipat, Bilaspur and Warangal.

Speaking at the opening of the first Jeep Connect outlet inauguration, Kevin Flynn, president and MD, FCA India said, “We wanted to take Jeep and Mopar brands closer to our customers living farther away from metros, and now we can achieve this with Jeep Connect, which is a compact concept that will offer the same premium experience that customers get in our outlets in city centres. Jeep Connect underscores our commitment towards providing customers a premium Jeep retail experience and sound customer care under Mopar.”

Flynn added, “We would like our dealer partners to grow along with us. The fact that they have made an additional investment towards the Jeep Connect outlets is testimony to the belief in the Jeep brand, our progress so far and what we have planned for the near future. A strong, healthy and dedicated network is the backbone of an automobile business and we are fully focused on making this happen the right way. We now have 68 sales and service outlets across India and we are growing at a strategically steady pace.”

At present, FCA India has 68 sales and service (3S) outlets, which will go beyond 70 this calendar year. New 3S outlets in Meerut (Uttar Pradesh), Solan (Himachal Pradesh), Jabalpur (Madhya Pradesh), Udaipur (Rajasthan), Imphal (Mizoram) and Kannur (Kerala) are already operational. The company says the Jeep brand has a strong retail and aftersales service presence in Northern, Southern and Western India with a footprint that is increasing in the North East and Central India.

FCA India is having a good run both in the domestic and export markets. In the April to September 2018 period (H1 FY2018, the company sold a total of 8,603 units (+68.49%) and shipped another 4,053 cars overseas. While it has a 0.49 percent PV market share, it has a 1.85 percent share of the UV market.