Fiat Chrysler is betting on the locally made Jeep Compass to shake off its insignificant presence in the Indian car market, with its chief executive telling ETAuto the new SUV will be the "tipping point" for the turnaround of Fiat Chrysler in the country.

Compass production starts in June ahead of a July launch. FCA has also green lighted the Renegade which will go on India sale in the first quarter of 2019 to challenge models like the Hyundai Creta and Renault Duster.

Kevin Flynn, MD of Fiat Chrysler Automobile told ETAuto: "We are at a cusp of a turnaround for the company with the roll out of locally manufactured Jeep. It was a very strategic decision to allow India to be one of the four manufacturing bases for Compass globally and take a key responsibility for making it for all right hand drive markets of the world."

Vehicles made in the Ranjangaon plant will be exported to Japan, UK, Australia, South Africa and other RHD markets.

With the Compass coming on stream and Tata Motors' Nexon SUV to be manufactured in the Ranjangaon plant, Fiat India will be hiring an additional workers over the next 12 months

Flynn said the Compass is a true global SUV, "We are not trying to deliver Indian car destined for India trying to make it work in the global market. We are offering a global car made in India. The car to be exported to Japan or UK will be the same as the one sold in India in terms of quality," he added.

According to several vendors supplying the company, Fiat Chrysler is eyeing 50,000 units in annual volumes, with almost 40-45% to be exported, ET Auto said.

Fiat India has spent US$278m to make the Jeep in Ranjangaon plant. The company has built a new body shop, the paint shop has been upgraded and the assembly line has been extended with new equipment.

"Our commitment to India is absolutely steadfast, this is the first chapter, this is the new era of our turnaround plan. The investment that has gone in has opened up new opportunities on what we are doing now," said Flynn.

The Compass will be powered by the 1.4 litre multi air petrol engine and a two litre diesel. The company claims it will be the safest SUV with 50 active and passive features in India.