INEOS Automotive today reveals the exterior design of the Grenadier, its forthcoming, no-nonsense 4×4 vehicle for the world, as another step on the road towards start of production.
Heavily influenced by the previous Land Rover Defender loved by Ineos boss Sir Jim Ratcliffe, it will be built in a new factory at Brocastle Industrial Estate, Bridgend as part of a £600M investment and roll off production lines there towards the end of 2021, creating 200 jobs in the factory next to the Ford Bridgend engine plant which closes this year. If demand for the BMW-powered Grenadier lives up to expectations, another 300 jobs will be created and the new factory expanded.
No price indication has been given but it is expected to be highly competitive in the marketplace when launched in the same way that its specification has been carefully honed to give the widest appeal and possibilities for buyers, both private, public and fleets. Open sourcing design means companies will be able to develop their own accessories and equipment to go into each Grenadier, which is particularly attractive to special vehicle operations and military contractors.
The company images show a long-wheelbase model as well as a double-cab pick-up version but more bodystyles will follow depending on demand from particular markets after it initially goes on sale in the UK and Europe and production is ramped up for global sales in places such as Australia and Africa.
Built from the ground up on an all-new platform, the INEOS Grenadier has been designed on purpose: namely to meet the demands of its future owners for a rugged, capable and comfortable go-anywhere working vehicle.
“The brief was simple. We set out to design a modern, functional and highly capable 4×4 vehicle with utility at its core”, said Toby Ecuyer, Head of Design. “A design that is ‘easy-to-read’, with no ambiguity about the Grenadier’s role in life. There to do everything you need, and nothing you don’t. Nothing is for show. Modern engineering and production techniques ensure the Grenadier is highly capable, but we have been able to stay true to the essence of creating a utilitarian vehicle that will stand the test of time”.
The experience of designing world-class yachts has allowed Toby to bring a unique perspective to the design process of the Grenadier which has resulted in a highly practical details packaged into a robust and purposeful 4×4 design.
Dirk Heilmann, INEOS Automotive’s CEO, said, “We are delighted to be able to share the design of the Grenadier so early in the process. Most manufacturers would hold back, but we are a new business, building a new brand, and we want to take people with us on this exciting journey.
“Showing the design now allows us to focus on the critical next phase of the vehicle’s development, testing its capability and durability. We have a very challenging programme ahead, as we put prototypes through their paces in all conditions, on the way to accumulating some 1.8 million test kilometres over the coming year. From today the covers are off. Testing ‘in plain sight’ without the need for camouflage wrapping, foam blocks or fake panels is an added benefit.”
He has spent 20 years with Ineos and is a self-confessed car-nut. He has traversed Fuerteventura in an old Jeep Wrangler, hopes to cross Canada from coast to coast and looks forward to travelling to some of the most remote places on Earth with the Grenadier.
The challenge of creating a highly capable modern 4×4, available to own across the world, is a mission that the car enthusiast in him found irresistible.
“This gave us our engineering blueprint for a capable, durable and reliable 4×4 built to handle the world’s harshest environments.
“But it had to look the part as well. As you will see today, Toby and his team have done a great job in delivering a design that is both distinctive and purposeful.”
About INEOS Grenadier
In 2017, INEOS Chairman, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, a car enthusiast and experienced adventurer, identified a gap in the market for a stripped back, utilitarian, hard-working 4×4 engineered for modern day compliance and reliability.
INEOS Automotive Limited was formed and a senior team of automotive professionals assembled to bring the vision to reality.
Combining rugged British spirit with German engineering rigour, the Grenadier will be a truly uncompromising 4×4 built from the ground up. Engineered to overcome all conditions, it will provide best-in-class off-road capability, durability and reliability to those who depend on a vehicle as a working tool, wherever they are in the world.
On the engineering front, it’s in the series development phase supported by engineering partner Magna Steyr with prototype testing under way. The INEOS Grenadier will go into production in late 2021.
|From ground to Grenadier
It will feature permanent all-wheel drive, high-strength materials and maximum storage capacity, and will be easily repairable.
The vehicle is based on a tough ladder chassis, offers lockable differentials and will have an interior that can be hosed down. It will have a one-tonne payload and 3.5 tonnes towing capacity.
The Grenadier has been designed and engineered to tackle the toughest environments. From landowners and forestry workers to explorers and ski operators, the Grenadier is for those who depend on a utilitarian, uncompromising 4×4.
But it will be comfortable, meeting the expectations of the 21stcentury consumer for equipment levels – and safety systems.
Key design features
- Form follows function – and capability is the priority
- A 4×4 with purpose should always look like a proper 4×4
- Grenadier has been designed to be ‘easy-to-read’ with a clear, unambiguous ‘purpose’
- Grenadier will be comfortable, meeting the expectations of the 21st century consumer for equipment levels and safety systems
- Balance of proportions has been achieved because there are no limitations dictated by an old platform: we started from scratch and there is no compromise on any angle
- Personalisation is a key requirement for our customers
- The Grenadier will be able to fulfil the core functions of a utilitarian 4×4, but it’s a vehicle that we want to become ‘part of the family’
- It’s been designed as a blank canvas for accessories, so customers can tailor the Grenadier to their evolving requirements
- ‘Open source’ has been a key theme, for interior as well as exterior design
- A wide range of accessories will be available from INEOS, but we also want Grenadier owners to incorporate their existing kit into their new vehicle, and for third-party producers to develop a range of compatible accessories
- The belt lines are functional – bump strips on the doors, or an optional ‘utility belt’ to the doors and rear body, to attach loads or accessories like a jerry can
- The rear of the Grenadier is practical as well as visually striking
- The small rear door opens first to enable easy loading and unloading of smaller items
- The rear ladder can be fitted to aid access to the roof, and its design means it is aligned with the shut lines of the tailgate
- The Grenadier can accommodate a Euro pallet
- Exterior wiring, with exit points to the front and the rear of the roof, is included as standard; this allows easy access for powering auxiliary lamps, work lamps or beacons
- Round lamps at the front and rear imply the strength of a solid tube running from front to back; the centre auxiliary lamps included as standard are integrated into the design
- The front lamps are the same units on the left and the right, making service and parts availability easier; similarly the rear lamps are a common unit
- Front fenders that you can sit on
- Roof bars and roof strips to enable loads to be mounted and secured directly without a roof rack but of course a roof rack can be easily added
- Storage box on the rear side is accessible from the exterior for grubby, smelly kit.