Land Rover Defender enthusiasts may be delighted to see the arrival of the Ineos Grenadier to our shores.

This new 4x4 brand ticks many boxes for those with an off-road driving passion in terms of its strength and rugged ability, great towing power and practical ownership features, but they mightn’t be impressed with the price.

A little bit of background first. The Ineos Grenadier was developed by British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe after Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) refused to sell him the rights to make the old-school Land Rover Defender when JLR announced that it would cease production in 2016. Jim, an off-road enthusiast, then decided to make his own 4x4 along the lines of the old Defender.

The concept was created in 2017. Along the way, there were numerous legal battles over the trademark rights. So today we have new car brand, Ineos Automotive, producer of the Grenadier that I’ve driven recently, and which is now built at a former Mercedes-Benz Smart car factory in France.

Given that background, the Ineos Grenadier was always sure to excel off-road. And it does what very few other 4x4s of today can achieve when it comes to hard off-road graft.

I’ve had the two-seat Utility Wagon version of the Grenadier on the road for a few days and finished my time with a true off-road experience at the Irish importer Orangeworks’ off-road centre in Carton House, outside Maynooth, Co Kildare.

Road driving alone won’t woe you towards the Grenadier Utility Wagon. That’s because it is less forgiving on the road than some other equivalent 4x4s that farmers and agricultural contractors are used to driving. Its comfort zone is clearly off-road and that’s where it leads the field.

The Ineos Grenadier utility wagon is a two-set commercial 4x4 with rugged construction around a solid ladder chassis and with great offroad and trailer towing ability. Entry prices are high, starting at €73,995 plus VAT or £65,000 including VAT in NI.

The Grenadier is powered by a straight six-cylinder BMW diesel engine that’s powerful and sounds the part. Engine power is impressive at 249bhp with 550Nm of torque, so the Grenadier has low-down torque for heavy off-road trailer towing jobs. This engine is matched to an eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox with no manual option. Out on the road, that engine and gearbox combination gave good acceleration with a noticeable engine grunt. Motorway driving allows cruising at 120km/hr at an engine speed of just over 2,000rpm, so it can be thirsty.

My on-road test covered some 352km and there was still 330km range left in the tank. That equals a range of 682km with combined higher-speed driving on motorways and more modest driving on smaller rural roads.

There’s a 90-litre capacity fuel tank with the Grenadier so that gave an economy rating of about 7.6km per litre (9.5km per litre official), which is 20% less than rated on road driving.

More noticeable during the days of driving than the fuel economy was Grenadier’s steering system. This is an old school recirculation ball system rather than the rack and pinion system more typical of other 4x4s.

This Ineos Grenadier Utility Wagon is powered by a straight six-cylinder BMW diesel engine that’s powerful and matched to a ZF automatic gearbox.

The end result is that steering takes a little extra effort and mental adjustment as it doesn’t automatically centre for you.

This system excels off-road where you need to be able to position the wheels in or out of ruts and keep them there. But out on a tarmac road, it takes a little getting used to, especially if you may be changing between cars.

Grenadier importers Orangeworks are taking each sale of the new 4x4 on a one-at-a-time basis. Customers get an induction course so that they are fully aware of how to use the technology in the rugged vehicle to the best effect.

For the off-road experience, you use of an array of helicopter-type buttons panelled into the ceiling of the 4x4

I spent some time behind the Grenadier wheel at the Carton off-road centre outside Maynooth and I don’t think that I could have appreciated the range of 4x4 features in the Grenadier if I had not done that.

Would I ever use them all if I owned a Grenadier? Well, that’s another question. But there is no doubting the thought, the engineering and the passion behind the creation of this 4x4.

For the off-road experience, you use of an array of helicopter-type buttons panelled into the ceiling of the 4x4.

There’s a certain adventure-type feeling to making use of them. They allow use of up to three differential lock systems, including gearbox configurations and hill descent controls to challenge the most daring off-road routes. The flight deck design is also featured in the tough-looking panel on the centre console.

The Grenadier comes prewired for a host of electric auxiliary accessories including winches, light bars and work lights, to name but a few.

There’s a solid feel to every aspect of the Ineos Grenadier utility wagon, including the doors.

There are plenty of USB points on the inside, but otherwise storage space is a little limited. Part of the Grenadier appeal, according to the manufacturers, is less computer systems, hinting there is less to go wrong. Only time will tell.

The two-seat Grenadier Utility Wagon has great load capacity. There are two rear-opening doors that split one-third, two-thirds for easy loading, with a full spare wheel bolted on to the wider of the two.

Most people whom I know buy a 4x4 for modest off-road driving and good towing ability.

If the ground is that bad, they’ll opt for a tractor, because they rarely drive off-road for fun, more for function, to get real work done. That’s why the Grenadier’s appeal will be narrow. It doesn’t have the on-road appeal, even though it excels at towing, putting it top of the class in this regard.


The Grenadier Utility Wagon that I drove is also available as a five-seat commercial, with full N1 classification. And very soon it may be the only 4x4 on the market with that option.

Entry prices for the Ineos Grenadier are high at €73,995 plus VAT or £65,000 including VAT in Northern Ireland, and that’s another perspective.

There’s a flight deck feeling to the controls on the Ineos Grenadier utility wagon, including the front and roof mounted buttons for the off-road controls.

Take the five-seat commercial option and the price jumps by another €37,000, before VAT. And if you have a preference for any colour other than white, you’ll pay from €668 extra, plus VAT, for that privilege.

This 4x4 might have all of the off-road ability to tackle rough stuff, but the pricing needs to be heavy tackled to make the deal more attractive.


  • Engine: 3.0 litre turbo diesel.
  • Engine power: 249bhp.
  • Engine torque: 550Nm.
  • 0 – 100km/hr: 9.9 seconds.
  • Economy: 10.5l/100km or 9.5km/l.
  • CO2 rating: 268g/km.
  • Fuel tank capacity: 90 litres.
  • Road tax annual: €333 taxed as commercial.
  • Main service: 12 months.
  • Euro NCAP rating: five-star (2022).
  • Load area dimensions LxW (mm) 1624 x 1584.
  • Towing capacity: 3.5 tonnes.
  • Permissible total weight: 7t.
  • Warranty: five years or 100,000km.
  • Entry price: €73,995 plus VAT.
  • Entry price NI: £65,000 incl VAT.
  • Cost of ownership

    With this new Ineos Grenadier 4x4, there is little to go on in terms of depreciation, which is the biggest part of a car ownership cost. Grenadier servicing will be a specialist operation for the near future with only one Irish-approved service centre near Dublin.

    So, servicing costs are unknown but are not expected to be cheap.

    On fuel consumption based on driving 20,000km per year and with the rated fuel consumption figure of 9.5km per litre, that converts to using about 2,100 litres per year or 6,300 over the three years. The cost is a whopping €11,025, at today’s fuel prices.

    The Grenadier ownership cost at €0.47/km is lower than the likes of the Volkswagen Amarok, mainly driven by my initial estimation of lower depreciation costs.

    This is based on the fact that there will be cult following for the Grenadier, and supplies will be low, which should help to keep used prices higher.