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Ineos has done what Land Rover could not, reviving its original Defender’s spirit. The independently financed British brand has created the fantasy off-road exploration vehicle for many: its Grenadier.
Powered by BMW, with a rugged ladder frame chassis, prodigious off-road ability and uncannily endearing styling, the Grenadier isn’t cheap. But it targets a very defined audience: those wealthy off-rad enthusiasts who want a vehicle which is not overly sophisticated but also not a Toyota Land Cruiser.
Quartermaster can haul
Ineos has now expanded its Grenadier model range with a double-cab bakkie version, called the Quartermaster. The design details trace elements of Land Rover’s previous-generation 110, 127 and 130 Defender double-cabs. Quartermaster looks terrific, with chunky proportions and rolling steel wheels.
The Quartermaster bakkie is larger than a Grenadier station wagon, with a 305mm longer chassis. That supports a large loadbox, measuring 1.56- by 1.61m, with a spare wheel mounted in the middle, instead of underneath, to ease access.
Payload rating is low, at only 760kg, with Ineos optimizing ride quality and suspension suppleness for the Quartermaster, instead of pure load-carrying ability. As with most hardcore 4×4 double-cab bakkies, the Grenadier is rated for a 3.5t tow rating.
Quartermaster with BMW power
Ineos is clearly targeting legacy Land Rover customers with the Grenadier double-cab bakkie. Still, its most natural rivals in the South African market are Toyota’s Land Cruiser and Jeep’s Gladiator. Where the Ineos is superior to both those vehicles is its powertrain, which is sourced from BMW.
There is fantastic irony of legacy in the fact that the Ineos Grenadier double-cab bakkie, is powered by BMW engines. Because some of the most collectable original Defenders were those powered by the BMW 2.8-litre six-cylinder engine, assembled in South Africa, briefly, during the mid-1990s.
Lots of power
Grenadier bakkie owners can choose a turbopetrol or turbodiesel version of BMW’s legendary 3-litre in-line six-cylinder engine.
The petrol version boosts 210kW and 450Nm, with the diesel making less power, at 183kW, but delivering more torque, at 550Nm. Both engine options drive all four wheels via a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission, with the turbodiesel being much lighter on fuel, consuming 10.5l/100km, compared to the turbopetrol’s 12.6l/100km.
Traction and off-road ability are equal to the Quartermaster’s robust appearance, with 264mm of ground clearance, 800mm of water fording ability and optional differential locks for each axle.
Pricing for the Ineos Grenadier Quartermaster is to be confirmed, but order books for South African customers, will open during the first week of August.