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Land Rover fans unimpressed by the new Defender can take solace in the latest reveal from Ineos. The British chemical company is now venturing into the automotive business, with its Grenadier.
And yes, all similarities in appearance with the original Defender are not coincidental.
Ineos analysed market trends and demand before embarking on its ambitious Grenadier development programme.
The result was a realisation that many Defender followers would buy a modernised version of the original Land Rover 4×4 — if it were available.
With this inspiration, the Ineos team set about designing a credibly rugged vehicle that would also contain contemporary technology upgrades.
This resulted in the Grenadier — and it looks fantastic.
From the clamshell bonnet to those externally hinged doors, the Ineos design team has very successfully reinterpreted Land Rover’s Defender. Beyond the appealing adventure wagon appearance, there are some very convincing engineering features.
Unlike most new 4×4 vehicles, which are built as a monocoque, the Grenadier uses a proven ladder frame platform. This mounts the bodywork on a steel frame, which allows for better durability in rugged off-road conditions.
Like the erstwhile Defender, Ineos has equipped its Grenadier with solid axles and coil springs.
This combination should give it tremendous toughness when navigating very challenging rocky terrain. However, at the same time, it should retain a relatively benign ride quality.
The Grenadier’s platform and suspension design might be an ode to classic off-road vehicle principles. But its power and drivetrain are thoroughly modern.
Ineos Grenadier engine
Instead of incurring costs to develop its own engine and gearbox, Ineos is sourcing these components from Germany.
BMW has agreed to supply both the petrol and diesel versions of its 3-litre six-cylinder engine to Ineos.
With the benefit of turbocharging, these BMW-powered Grenadiers should offer strong on- and off-road performance. Distributing engine power to all four wheels is a ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox — the same brand used by Rolls-Royce.
A striking design and rugged components should make the Ineos Grenadier a very compelling alternative to most current SUVs.
Ineos expects to launch the Grenadier in South Africa by 2022.
Feature image: Ineos