In what’s described as a “form follows function” approach, the Grenadier design is utilitarian and very much in the style and spirit of the Land Rover – being a rugged, capable and relatively comfortable go-anywhere working vehicle.
While it has obvious influences of the Land Rover, and more specifically the Defender, in its appearance, there are touches of the equally rugged Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen in the design, too. Despite this, Ineos Automotive say the Grenadier is a ground-up design, with the production units to be similarly bespoke and not conversions of an existing vehicle.
Ineos Automotive was formed by the Ineos Group back in 2017, specifically to produce a vehicle addressing what the British company says is a gap in the market for a utilitarian off-road vehicle.
“The brief (for the Grenadier) was simple. We set out to design a modern, functional and highly capable 4x4 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”.
Despite being created in partnership with Magna Steyr, the same Austrian engineering firm who build the G-Wagen for Mercedes-Benz, the Grenadier will reportedly be powered by BMW engines, with both petrol and diesel six-cylinders to be offered, matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission and separate low-range transfer case.
While production won’t commence until late 2021, revealing the Grenadier design now was a deliberate move, according to Ineos Automotive’s CEO, Dirk Heilmann, so customers could follow the vehicle on its 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,” Heilmann said.
“The covers are off (so) testing ‘in plain sight’ without the need for camouflage wrapping, foam blocks or fake panels is an added benefit.”
As well as the four-door wagon body, the images show that the Grenadier will also be built in dual-cab utility form, which is sure to attract the attention of potential Australian importers.
Series production is planned to commence in late 2021, split between a chassis fabrication factory in Portugal and final assembly plant in Wales. The focus will be on the wagon initially, followed by the dual cab ute and possibly a short wheelbase variant further down the track.
European and UK market release is expected at the end of 2021, with delivery to Australia and other markets to follow, possibly from early 2022.
Full mechanical specs, safety features, series variants, pricing and further details will be revealed as production draws nearer.