Jeep to launch Creta rivalling SUV based on Citroen platform

Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares, while speaking to our sister publication Autocar UK, alluded to the CMP, saying, “That platform has the capability to be sourced all over the world, with simpler solutions that make it much more cost-competitive than anything else we can find in the western world.”

By Sergius Barretto and Ketan Thakkar calendar 18 Jun 2024 Views icon5232 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Jeep to launch Creta rivalling SUV based on Citroen platform

A new-generation Jeep Renegade is under development and will arrive by 2027, Stellantis has confirmed in its recently concluded investor day presentation. While the company didn’t disclose many details, we can confirm that a low-cost version is being developed based on Citroen’s Common Modular Platform (CMP), which underpins its C3 range of cars in India. It is not clear if this Citroen-based Jeep will be called the Renegade when it goes on sale in India.

Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares, while speaking to our sister publication Autocar UK, alluded to the CMP, saying, “That platform has the capability to be sourced all over the world, with simpler solutions that make it much more cost-competitive than anything else we can find in the western world.”

That’s a marked shift in strategy; previously, it was stated that the new Renegade would use the group’s STLA Small platform. However, the shift to the more cost-effective CMP isn’t unprecedented. The company’s fourth-generation Citroen C3, sold in Europe, switched to the CMP when it was launched in late 2023.

Jeep Renegade electric 4x4

The company also announced that the new Jeep Renegade would have a battery electric model priced under USD 25,000 (about Rs 20.8 lakh) – yet another hint at its low-cost underpinnings and an indication of how the brand would tackle the 4x4 conundrum.

Central to the ethos of the Jeep brand, is the fact that every model must have a 4x4 variant. While the CMP doesn’t have the capability for an ICE-powered 4x4 drivetrain – it will require significant and costly reengineering of the monocoque floor – the platform was adapted to what the company calls the Smart Car Platform, which is an electric iteration of the CMP. This enables the CMP to support a 4x4 version. An electric rear axle with an ICE-driven front was also explored to give this platform’s 4x4 capabilities; however, that strategy was shelved as it drove up costs.

Using a common platform will give both Jeep and Citroen brands, favourable economies of scale, and this could drive down costs of key modules and components such as powertrain, E/E architecture and suspension items. In fact, the cost-benefit is what could allow Jeep to peg the starting price of its new SUV at around Rs 15 lakh. Sources said the E/E architecture, which controls all the electronics and on-board tech, is likely to be upgraded to support some key ADAS features, which are becoming mainstream in the fast-evolving Indian market.

Jeep Renegade powertrain

The 1.2-litre, three-cylinder turbo-petrol used in the Citroen C3 and C3 Aircross models would be a logical fit but would be seen as underpowered for a ‘Jeep’. Also, since the Renegade is 4.2 metres long, it does not qualify as a ‘small car’ (to avail of the lower 28 percent GST), and hence, there is no cost benefit in using a sub-1.2 litre engine, which is also a pre-condition to meet the small car definition. 

Sources said the next-gen Renegade will use the more sophisticated EP6DT 1.6-litre direct-injection turbo-petrol, which is part of the ‘Prince’ engine family developed jointly by BMW and PSA. The EP6DT engine comes with multiple power outputs, but it’s unclear which one Jeep will use. A 150hp unit is most likely, but there is also the possibility of a higher-spec 180hp version, which powers the petrol C5 Aircross and other Stellantis models in international markets.

Jeep Renegade India launch

An India launch for the current Renegade was under consideration, especially since it uses an iteration of the Compass’ Small Wide platform. However, it was deemed unviable for the market as the Renegade’s price and size were too close to the Compass’. But underpinned by Citroen’s CMP, the new Renegade could finally be launched in the country. It would also effectively cover for the lack of the new-generation Compass, whose Indian launch plans have been shelved for now. 

Autocar India reached out to Stellantis for a comment, to which the company said, “Stellantis remains committed to investing in the India market as it is the only country to locally produce and assemble four Jeep nameplates outside of the United States. There are no changes to the current production of Jeep vehicles in India and there are no announcements to be made at this time.”

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