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2022 Jeep Meridian Review

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2022 Jeep Meridian Review

2022 Jeep Meridian Review – My Dream My Car : Hello friends, if you are thinking of buying a “Car” and you have no detailed idea about car, I welcome you to this blog. Today I will let you know – “2022 Jeep Meridian Review”.

Jeep is already known for its rugged and capable SUVs, but the announcement of the new Jeep Meridian has brought a new dimension to the company. The Jeep brand has launched the new Jeep Meridian at a time when it needs to find its second volume seller in the highly sought after 7-seater family SUV space.

The SUV for the extended family has become a staple in many brands’ portfolios. The 3-row, 6–7-seater SUV now has such a lot of demand, that many car makers are unable to make enough, and long waiting periods are common. The Meridian is huge when you view it from the side.

The length almost seems a bit unwieldy, making me wonder if it will be as capable off-road as the Jeep Compass SUV. The rear overhang is pronounced and quite a jump over the 2-row Compass. However, the approach, breakover and departure angles have apparently been carefully calibrated with an eye on endowing it with the same legendary prowess of a Jeep.

The Jeep brand has a rich history of off-road capability that is still going strong today. In fact, the Jeep brand continues to sell vehicles that can get you through some pretty tough terrain. The 2022 Jeep Meridian is one such car. While this one isn’t getting packed into its vehicle’s carrying capacity, there is no denying that it still provides plenty of power, versatility, and comfort for just about anyone in your family or group.

Highlights of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

The Jeep Meridian is a new three-row SUV for the Indian market and is based on the Compass. Though the interior and powertrain options are similar to the smaller sibling, the Meridian with the brand’s uni-body architecture boasts some cosmetic enhancements. Also, it’s way bigger in size and goes on to emulate the Grand Cherokee. How does it perform? Well, we drove it recently to know the answer. This diesel-only 4WD seven-seater, upon launch in India, will compete with the MG Gloster and the Toyota Fortuner.

• Brand Name — Jeep Meridian
• Model Name — Limited MT
• Vehicle Type — SUV
• Body Type — SUV
• Colours Option — Velvet Red, Techno Metallic Green, Magnesio Grey, Pearl White, Brilliant Black
• Engine Type — 1956cc, 2.0L Multijet II Turbo Diesel Engine
• Engine cc (Displacement) — 1956 cc
• Fuel Type — Diesel
• Maximum Power — 170 HP @ 3750 rpm
• Maximum Torque — 350 Nm @ 1750 rpm
• Number of Gears — 6-Speed Manual
• Acceleration (0-100 kmph) — 10.8 seconds
• Top Speed — 198 kmph
• Seats — 7 Seater
• Doors — 5 Doors
• ARAI Mileage (Certified) — 15.3 kmpl
• Ground Clearance — 203 mm
• Boot Space — 170 litres
• Fuel Tank Capacity — 60 litres
• Price — ₹Rs.29,90,000 – ₹ 36,95,000 (Ex-Showroom Price Delhi)
• Basic Warranty — 3-year/1,00,000km manufacturer warranty.
• Extended Warranty — 2 years / 1.5 Lakhs kms
• Official Tagline — Sophistication Redefined

2022 Jeep Meridian Review – My Dream My Car

2022 Jeep Meridian Review

The iconic Jeep brand is back in action with its new 7-seater Jeep Meridian. As many OEMs tasted their success in India with their 7-seater cars, Jeep is also replicating the same mantra. This large premium SUV is based on the same platform as the Compass but is unique enough to set it, leagues, apart. The Jeep Meridian comes in a 4×4 version but it is built on a monocoque chassis. Due to the absence of Ford Endeavour, it has given way to the Jeep Meridian to occupy the space along with Toyota Fortuner. The success of Jeep Meridian will be decided by its driving dynamics and the performance that was missing in most of the 4×4 A more pronounced Jeep Grille, Sleeker headlamps (when compared with Compass), and a dash of chrome, all help the Meridian to look different from the Compass, however, the Jeep DNA is very clearly visible. The bumper is new, re-profiled for a better approach angle and the full-width chrome bar bisects the front bumper and there is a large air dam to embolden the face.

The increased length makes the car look long and powerful while its slick-looking 18-inch alloys add to its oomph quotient. The sides of the SUV are dominated by a strong character line, running at the top of the door, and Meridian badging on the front doors. The 18-inch wheels are particularly good-looking and fill the wheel arches very well.

The Meridian stands on 18-inch wheels with a nice alloy design. The square-ish wheel arches are mammoth but that was expected because this vehicle also needs to go beyond conventional roads. At the rear, the slim tail lamps are distinctive, even polarising, and are connected by a slab of chrome, while at the bottom of the bumper there’s more chrome trim. The increase in length and width clearly separate it from the Compass. Measuring 4769mm the Meridian is just 26mm shorter than the Fortuner and it definitely looks big.

The interior of the Meridian looks similar to Compass, but because it’s bigger, Meridian gets an upgrade by having a bigger dashboard. Though the instrument cluster has grown to 10.2 inches and it looks the same as Compass. Meridian gets the two-tone upholstery and looks premium and the front seats are now ventilated. There’s also ample room in both the first and the second row of seating, and five full-size adults will have no trouble fitting in.

But, the third row of the Meridian is a bit of a squeeze. Though the car is tagged as 7-seater the third row can accommodate only kids. The one-touch operation enables the middle row seats to tumble down and provides easy access to the third row. The floor of the third row is a bit high, the seating is not really comfortable for big adults.

In terms of boot space, you get 170 litres with the third row up to where you can accommodate one cabin bag, if the third row is folded you get a boot space of 418 litres. Meridian offers a host of creature comfort features, which include auto-headlamps, driver seat height adjust, push-button start/stop, 10.2-inch semi-digital instrument cluster, powered mirrors, wireless charging, keyless-entry, panoramic sunroof, 360-degree camera, a powered tailgate and much more! Safety features include TPMS, ABS, EBD, ESC, Traction control, six airbags and an electronic parking brake. The cabin gets liberal use of high-quality leather and soft-touch materials, all of which add to Meridian’s premium quotient.

When it comes to powertrain, the Meridian comes with a variety of options, but the engine will be the same 2.0-litre turbo diesel that also powers the Compass. The various options will include a 2WD version with a manual gearbox, a 2WD version with an automatic gearbox, and a full-fat 4WD version with an automatic gearbox. The AWD is an on-demand system that sends drive to the rear when slip is detected, but you can lock it in 4×4 mode, and there are three drive modes to choose from depending on the terrain you’re tackling.

The Meridian also comes with the Koni Frequency Selective Dampers as seen on the Compass along with the independent rear suspension. The system has been fine-tuned in the Meridian to accommodate additional size and weight. You also get rear disc brakes and in keeping with the focus on the rear seat, the setup is softer and tuned to deliver a better ride quality.

The Meridian moved effortlessly on the road. The main highlight of the Meridian is its ride quality, which is superb and deals with broken roads very well. During the media drive, we were given the car to do various off-roading challenges like one wheel up in the air, clambering up steps, axle twisters, rock trails, side-slopes, and steep drops to test hill-descent control. I should say Meridian is amazing and simply effortless to drive after going through all the off-roading conditions.

Ride quality is impressive too, and the Meridian feels much like the Compass, solid and built to take a beating with an added dash of plushness. With its off-road capability, it performs on surfaces where you never thought this vehicle could go. Except for the third-row space, Meridian ticks all the boxes, so now the fate of the Meridian will be decided based on how Jeep is going to price it. When compared with its competition, the Meridian is easily one of the best SUVs when it comes to the unique combination of luxury and off-roading capability.

2022 Jeep Meridian Review : Specification

The Meridian borrows its core mechanicals from the Compass. It is powered by the same 2.0 liter Multijet II diesel engine from the Compass (and the Safari, Harrier, Hector, and Hector Plus, to be more specific!) . No petrols for now. The engine produces 168 hp and 350 Nm on the 7-seater too. However, I felt the core character of this engine to be a tad different from that of the Compass’. 6 speed manual and 9-speed automatic gearboxes are on offer, of which the latter can be had with an AWD system- like on our test car. There are, however, no paddle shifters- a major miss I would say.

Talking of refinement, the Meridian’s engine feels a touch quieter and smoother than the one on the Compass. The reworked fuel injection unit also contributes to this. However, it is still quite audible, especially when revved. The cabin insulation feels quite competent.

Key Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Airbags,
• ABS with EBD,
• R18 Diamond Cut Dual-Tone Alloy Wheels,
• Electric Parking Brake,
• Dual Zone Automatic Climate Control,
• Remote Keyless Entry,
• One Touch Express Up/Down Front & Rear Express Down Power Windows,
• Roof Rails,
• Rear Spoiler,
• Reverse Parking Camera,
• Reverse Park Assist Sensors,
• All-Speed Traction Control System,
• 7.0″ Instrument Cluster,
• Apple Car Play,
• Android Auto,
• Uconnect with 25.6 cm (10.1) Touchscreen Display R1 High,
• 9 High-Performance Alpine Speakers,
• Integrated Voice Commands,
• Luxurious Emperador Brown Quilted Leather Seats,
• 15+ Connectivity Features.

Engine & Transmission Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Engine Details — 1956cc, 2.0L Multijet II Turbo Diesel Engine
• Engine cc (Displacement) — 1956 cc
• Fuel Type — Diesel
• Maximum Power — 170 HP @ 3750 rpm
• Maximum Torque — 350 Nm @ 1750 rpm
• Gearbox Type — Manual
• Number of Gears — 6-Speed Manual
• Acceleration (0-100 kmph) — 10.8 seconds
• Number of Cylinders — 4
• Emission Norms — BS6-Compliant
• Top Speed — 198 kmph
• ARAI Mileage (Certified) — 15.3 kmpl

Steering, Suspension & Breaking Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Suspension — Frequency Selective Damping Suspension
• Front Suspension — McPherson Strut with Frequency Selective Damping, HRS with Anti Roll Bar
• Rear Suspension — Multilink with Strut Suspension with FSD, HRS with Anti Roll Bar
• Breaking System — ABS
• Brakes — Front Ventilated, Rear Disk
• Front Brake Type — Disc
• Rear Brake Type — Disc
• Turning Radius (Metres) — 5.7m
• Parking Brakes — Electric Parking Brake
• Traction Control — All-Speed Traction Control System (TCS)

Wheels & Tyres Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Wheel Type — Alloy Wheels
• Wheel Size — R18 Diamond Cut Dual-Tone Alloy Wheels
• Tyres Type — All Terrain Tyres
• Tyres Size — 18 inches
• Front Tyre — 235/55-R18
• Rear Tyre — 235/55-R18

Physical Measurement Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Overall Length — 4769 mm
• Overall Width — 1859 mm
• Overall Height — 1698 mm
• Wheelbase — 2782 mm
• Ground Clearance — 203 mm
• Turning Radius — 5.7 metres
• Departure Angle — 23.6 degree
• Approach Angle — 21.5 degree
• Ramp Breakover Angle — 23.1 degree
• Turning Radius (Metres) — 5.7m

Space & Capacity Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Seating Capacity — 7
• Number of Seating Rows 3 Rows
• Number of Doors — 5 Doors
• Boot Space — 170 litres
• Fuel Tank Capacity — 60 litres

Interior Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Dual Tone Interiors — Black/Brown Interior
• Door Centre trim and door armrest — Soft Touch IP & Front Door Trim
• Tachometer
• Electronic Multi-Tripmeter
• Leather Seats
• Leather Steering Wheel
• Glove Compartment
• Digital Clock
• Digital Odometer
• Electric Adjustable Seats — Front
• Ventilated Seats
• Dual Tone Dashboard
• Child Seat Mounting Provisions
• Door Scuff Plates
• Leather Gear knob

Exterior Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Head Light — Automatic
• Projector Headlamps — LED Projector Headlamp with Integrated Daytime Running Lamps
• Front Fog Lights — LED Front Cornering Fog Lamps
• LED Tail light — Slim LED Tail Lamps
• Interior Room Lamp — MAP Courtesy Lamp in Door Pocket
• ORVM Turn Indicators
• Rear Fog Lights
• Electrically Foldable ORVMs
• Electrically Adjustable ORVMs
• Shark Fin Antenna
• Body Coloured Outside Mirrors
• Body Coloured Door Handles
• Roof Rails
• Rear Spoiler
• Rain Sensing Wiper
• Rear Window Wiper
• Rear Window Defogger
• Alloy Wheels
• Rear Spoiler
• Sun Roof
• Moon Roof
• Outside Rear View Mirror Turn Indicators
• Trunk Opener — Remote
• Tyre Type — Tubeless, Radial

Safety Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Anti-Lock Braking System
• Central Locking
• Power Door Locks
• Child Safety Locks
• No of Airbags — 6
• Driver Airbag
• Passenger Airbag
• Side Airbag-Front
• Day & Night Rear View Mirror — Auto
• Passenger Side Rear View Mirror
• Rear Seat Belts
• Seat Belt Warning
• Traction Control
• Adjustable Seats
• Tyre Pressure Monitor
• Crash Sensor
• Centrally Mounted Fuel Tank
• Engine Check Warning
• Automatic Headlamps
• Electronic Stability Control
• Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD)
• Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
• Electronic Stability Program (ESP)
• Traction Control — All-Speed Traction Control System (TCS)

Entertainment & Communication Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Radio
• Speakers Front
• Speakers Rear
• Integrated 2DIN Audio
• Wireless Phone Charging
• USB & Auxiliary input
• Bluetooth Connectivity
• Touch Screen
• Touch Screen size — 10.1 Inch
• Connectivity — Android Auto,Apple CarPlay
• Android Auto
• Apple CarPlay
• No of Speakers — 9 High-Performance Alpine Speakers
• Uconnect5 with 25.6 cm (10.1) Touchscreen Display R1 High.
• Bluetooth® Audio Streaming Speaker (9) with amplifier Integrated Navigation Integrated voice commands
• Voice Recognition — Integrated Voice Commands

Comfort & Convenience features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Rear Seat Recline — 2nd Row – Recline, Fold & Tumble, 3rd Row – Recline and Fold Flat
• Leather Seats — Luxurious Emperador Brown Quilted Leather Seats
• Power Outlet — 12V Power Outlet
• Rear AC Vents — 3rd Row AC Vents with Dedicated Evaporator Unit
• Air Conditioner — Dual Zone Automatic Climate Control
• Rear Seat (Split) — 2nd Row – 60/40 Split, 3rd Row – 50/50 Split Seats
• Keyless Entry — Remote Keyless Entry
• Power Windows — One Touch Express Up/Down Front & Rear Express Down Power Windows
• Rear Defogger
• Solar Glass
• Engine Start/Stop Button
• Rear Washer & Wiper
• Auto Dimming Inside Rear View Mirror
• Rain Sensing Wipers
• Remote Boot Release
• Coat Hooks
• Wireless Smartphone Charging
• Steering Mounted Controls
• Remote Fuel Filler
• Heater
• Automatic Climate Control
• 2 Zone
• Remote Trunk Opener
• Low Fuel Warning Light
• Accessory Power Outlet
• Remote Horn & Light Control
• Rear Seat Headrest
• Adjustable Headrest
• Rear Seat Centre Arm Rest
• Cup Holders-Rear
• Seat Lumbar Support
• Cruise Control
• Parking Sensors
• Rear
• Navigation System
• Find My Car location
• Smart Access Card Entry
• Voice Control
• USB Charger — Front & Rear
• Central Console Armrest

Locks & Security Features of 2022 Jeep Meridian Review

• Keyless Entry — Remote Keyless Entry
• Smart Access Card Entry
• Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA),
• Fading Brake Support (FBS),
• Ready Alert Brake (RAB),
• Rain Brake, Assist (RBA),
• Hill Start Assist (HAS),
• Automatic Vehicle Hold (AVH),
• 60+ Active and Passive Safety & Security,
• Rear Camera
• Speed Alert
• Geo-fence Alert
• Hill Descent Control
• Hill Assist
• 360 View Camera
• Parking Sensors
• Central Locking — Remote

2022 Jeep Meridian Review : Impressive Looks

With the Meridian, Jeep hasn’t simply bolted on a longer tail section to make a three-row variant out of the Compass, but creditably has re-modelled the entire car with a substantially longer wheelbase and new body panels. The Meridian is 4,769mm long, which is a good 364mm longer than the Compass. A lot of that length comes from an extended wheelbase, which is a sizeable 2,782mm, or 146mm more than the Compass. In fact, the Meridian’s wheelbase is the longest in its class, a tad more than even the Fortuner. And it’s the long wheelbase, along with the relatively short front and rear overhangs (critical for a Jeep’s off-road capability), that give the Meridian superbly balanced proportions. In fact, the Meridian is more Grand Cherokee-like than a stretched Compass, and that’s down to the rich detailing all round.

A good helping of chrome running along the underside of the familiar seven-slot grille and the tops of the slim headlights nicely sets the Meridian apart as the Compass’s bigger brother. The two-tone roof with a blackened D-pillar and a chrome surround above the doors that nicely highlights the silhouette look very upmarket, too, as does the slim rear tail-light clusters that are neatly integrated with the chrome strip. The Meridian’s smart set of 18-inch alloys (up from the Compass’ 17 inchers) adds to the road presence. The Compass was a good looking car, and the Meridian looks even better. And looks in this segment is half the battle won.

The dashboard is pretty much the same as the Compass and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because the Compass itself received a major upgrade to the interior in 2021. The quality of materials, the chunky door handles, piano black finishes, all exude an upmarket feel. However, a little bit more differentiation, other than two-tone, brown and black colour scheme (the Compass is all black) and the differently stitched seats, would have been welcome. Also, some of the plastics lower down in the cabin and the seat base feel a bit hard and shiny, which stand out against the brown seat trim.

The all-digital dashboard is carried over from the Compass too, so you get a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster with multiple displays, a 10.1-inch infotainment system that has wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a 360 degree camera that is crisp and sharp as ever, and one of the better interfaces around.

There’s wireless charging, driving modes, USB Type-C and USB Type-A ports, and a panoramic sunroof, which bags all the must-have features that SUV owners want. In terms of practicality, there’s enough space to store your stuff on long trips but the door pockets are a bit shallow to hold a 1.0-litre water bottle.

It’s when you move to the middle row that you can feel the change. Though legroom is similar to the Compass and width is just a tad more, thanks to slimmer door pockets (no place for big bottles here either) the seats are a big improvement. For one, you sit much higher than in the Compass, so automatically under-thigh support improves, which is further enhanced by the reprofiled seats that have a larger squab.

The high seating position and the large window makes it easier to look out, and this enhanced visibility is always welcome on long drives, as are the reclinable seat backs. However, unlike other 7-seaters, the middle row doesn’t slide, which is a shame because this could have given some much needed extra legroom. Bear in mind that the Meridian’s rear seat isn’t particular wide, a common complaint with the Compass, and hence traveling three up can be restrictive.

The third row is quite disappointing when you consider the space on offer in other 7-seaters. Sure, the one-touch or one-pull lever that flips and tumbles forward both sections of the 60:40 rear seat base makes it easy to access the last row, but the low roof forces you to contort a fair bit to wiggle inside. The seats are placed on the floor and that pushes your knees up and against the middle-row seat back. But the bigger problem is the overall space crunch in the third row. It’s not a place where adults can travel long distances in comfort and is best left for children or for luggage.

The Meridian makes a better case for itself as a 5-seater, with the rearmost seats folded down to offer 481 litres of luggage space. That said, even with the third-row seats in place, there’s enough space for a couple of soft bags. A nice touch is the powered tailgate, which has the button inside the cabin and not on the tailgate itself, so you don’t have to reach up high to activate it.

2022 Jeep Meridian Review : Powertrain & Range

Under the hood, Meridian shares its powertrain with the Compass. In fact, it uses the same 2 litre Multijet diesel motor which we have seen in some of the competitor models too. Power output figures stand at 170 PS and 350 Nm of max torque, which is same as that on the Compass.

Transmission options include a 6-speed MT and a 9-speed torque converter. Customers will have an option to choose the vehicle with a 4×2 configuration or a top-spec 4×4 setup. Manual Transmission is being offered only with the 4×2 option while the 4×4 comes with an AT as standard.

On the trim front, Jeep will be offering the Meridian in two trims, namely Limited and Limited (O). Later, we believe special editions like Night Eagle and Trail-Hawk should come-in for the Meridian too.

Jeep has set up an off-road trail with help from Event Solutions – a company that curates off-road experiences. Of course while the Meridian will have front wheel and 4 wheel drive variants, my test car has 4X4 – the Jeep Active Drive 4X4 system as seen on the Compass – making the off-roading pretty effortless. Selec-terrain with sand/mud, snow and auto drive modes is standard on the 4X4 variants. What’s nice is we’re not just going into like an obstacle course that’s been set up to simply check wheel travel/articulation or approach and departure angles. What we are instead doing is literally going off-roading. I’m doing a cross country drive through the woods. And to me, personally, that’s always fun. But it’s also the better showcase of the car’s capability.

Selec-terrain with sand/mud, snow and auto drive modes is standard on the 4X4 variants

The course is technical and also involves quite a few kilometres of driving in the rough, some steep inclines, sand banks, water crossings, and yes – even some of those zones specifically set up to display the car’s articulation. This is the part that’s a lot of fun, where, you know you have to bring some of your own skill into play as well. But you also know, it’s just staggering what the car will do for you. Be it hill descent control, or the 4×4 the Meridian does it all very well.

2022 Jeep Meridian Review : Performance

The Jeep Meridian is being offered only with one engine option; and it is a diesel. While other 3-row SUVs lower down in the size and price segments offer petrol engines, the Meridian’s size and weight does make the diesel’s torque delivery at lower rpm-levels and better usability at slower speeds the right choice. Yet, it will miss a petrol engine; the Compass’s 1.4-litre turbo petrol might not have been enough for the Meridian. So, what the new 3-row Jeep gets is the same 2-litre multijet II turbocharged diesel mill from the Compass and in the same state of tune.

The engine delivers the same 170hp of peak power and 350Nm of peak torque. The powertrain choices include the 6-speed manual or the 9-speed automatic transmissions for the 4X2 version, and the top-trim Meridian Limited 4X4 (four-wheel drive) variant can be had with only the automatic transmission.

The auto transmission 4X2 Meridian was the one I drove on the highway leading up to the off-road driving section that had been curated by Jeep engineers and officials. At the hour-long intense off-road section, I swapped into the 4X4 Meridian Limited. The 9-speed auto gearbox’s calibration and mapping has been tweaked to deliver a more measured performance. The same powertrain in the Compass feels a tad quicker. Engine noise levels are better contained in the cabin at higher rpm-levels. There isn’t much change between the Compass and the Meridian in slow, city speed characteristics.

On the highway, the Meridian feels even more composed and steady with the longer wheelbase contributing to the poise. The extra 100+kg weight doesn’t bog down the Meridian’s on-road performance. Behind the wheel I didn’t feel the impact of its size and footprint either. The Meridian truly comes into its own when it steps out of tarmac.

The off-road course was a mix of kutcha trails in wooded terrain, steep rocky climbs, a simulated river bed and some wheel articulation ruts that had been cut into the ground. I do approach the trails with the sense that the Meridian should be fine. But seeing it hustle up and down the rocky, slippery slopes and perform the crazy tilted up wheel articulation sections is still surprising. In fact, I did some of the slippery sections in 4X2 mode and others without even choosing specific settings.

There are four off-road settings to choose from, including an auto ‘Selec-Terrain’. The others are snow, sand and mud. It also gets the full suite of off-road aids like hill descent control, which was also offered with the Compass. Handling characteristics on and off the road is brilliant with independent suspension endowed with hydraulic rebound stopper and frequency selective damping. Together they contribute to a ride that is firm yet comfortable.

2022 Jeep Meridian Review : Riding & Comfort

The Compass is known for its ride and handling, but the Meridian takes it up to an altogether different level. Stability on any surface is simply phenomenal and the way the Meridian flattens any road is astonishing. You really don’t have to worry about broken roads, or flinch when you hit a pothole or are forced off a narrow road by an oncoming truck. The Meridian’s beefy independent suspension, which comes with Frequency Selective Damping (FSD) and Hydraulic Rebound Stoppers (HRS), just soaks it up.

There is an underlying firmness to the ride, which isn’t buttery soft, but unlike the Compass, which had a hard edge, the Meridian’s suspension set-up has more compliance. Also, the Meridian has less vertical movement than the shorter-wheelbase Compass, and hence, passengers too feel more settled.

The confidence the Meridian gives you though corners is amazing too. There’s minimal body roll, the steering is accurate with lots of feel, and the big Jeep resolutely holds its line. The brakes too are progressive and it’s the predictability of the Meridian, the fact that it won’t behave erratically or throw up any surprises when the road surface suddenly changes, that really wins your heart. There’s simply no other SUV in this category or even a segment above and below that rides and handles with such aplomb.

If the Meridian is a class act on road, then off-road it’s the star of the show. A superbly curated off-road track outside Chandigarh was a great opportunity to test the Meridian’s 4×4 capabilities. Whether it was crawling up steps, see-sawing over ‘axle breakers,’ scrabbling up and down steep slopes, wading through water troughs or raising an articulated wheel like a dog trying to mark its territory, the Meridian did it all without breaking into a sweat. I didn’t even need to select ‘4×4 low’! You get multiple drive modes (Sand/Mud, Snow and Auto) but most owners will stick to the default Auto setting, which maximises traction automatically depending on the surface you’re driving on.

The Meridian is a Jeep first and an SUV next, which means it has to have all the 4×4 hardware that lives up to the brand’s legacy. Not that owners will use it, but it’s a bit of insurance in your back pocket, so it’s good to know what the Meridian is capable of.

Our Opinion

The Jeep Meridian is an excellent Urban SUV with enormous off-roading capabilities. However, the third row of seats, which happens to be one of its key USPs, failed to impress us. It would be interesting to see if customers would want to pay a few additional lakhs for an extended boot over the Compass.

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