Ineos is a brand new company started by chemical engineer and billionaire Jim Ratcliffe who wanted to keep the spirit of the old Land Rover Defender alive after the new model went in quite a different direction. He’s investing over $1-billion into this project, whose first model, the Ineos Grenadier, is set to start deliveries very soon, but now we’ve found one report that the company is also planning to go electric.
Autocar says the news that the company was working on an EV was confirmed to the publication by Ratcliffe himself, who announced that the first electric model would not be an electric version of the already revealed Grenadier hardcore off-roader (pictured). Instead, they will opt to give electric power to a smaller model, possibly a three-door, that will not share underpinnings with the Grenadier and it will be built on an all-new platform, according to the source.
And even though it will be electric, the new Ineos model will be cheaper than the gasoline- or diesel-burning Grenadier, although Ratcliffe didn’t mention by how much. It should be a lot like the short-wheelbase Defender 90 model (also a three-door) and it won’t be sold as a more posh vehicle, but the company will imbue it with the same workhorse spirit present in its other product (which it will sell in both passenger and commercial versions).
As Jim Ratcliffe put it,
What we’re also looking at quite carefully at the moment is a smaller version of the Grenadier – electric.
We need to embrace the future, which clearly, in an urban environment, is going to be electric – but even in a country environment, if you’re a farmer, you probably will have an electric vehicle you can drive around on tracks and things like that.
So you want one that’s capable, but it’s electric. I think that’s our vision at the moment.
There is a chance that this smaller and cheaper electric model will not be quite as hardcore an off-road machine, and it may be designed with more on-road driving in mind too, because if it’s too aggressively set up for off-road, it will be inefficient and not deliver good range. More details on this second Ineos model will be revealed in the next few months.
BMW currently supplies six-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines for the Grenadier, and Ineos generally likes to outsource to field leaders, so the Bavarians could also be the ones to provide the fledgling automaker with EV tech. This has not been announced yet, but the new model will apparently be built alongside the Grenadier in the factory that until very recently used to produce Smart vehicles (which Ineos produced for a few months after it gained control of the plant in order to gather experience building cars).
Originally published at https://insideevs.com/news/589258/ineos-electric-4×4-off-roader-coming/