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You’d be forgiven for not really knowing the name Ineos. The brand isn’t exactly an established maker of SUVs and cars like BMW or Volkswagen. Ineos is a massive chemical company. Because of that, their founder, Jim Ratcliffe, has quite a lot of money that he uses to do a great many things. For example, the brand runs a successful pro-cycling team. And sponsors a sailing team. And sponsors the Mercedes Formula 1 team. However, what they aren’t known for is their automobiles. The new Ineos Grenadier SUV promises to change that.

Ineos wants to shift the status-quo

Mercedes' Formula 1 car with the Ineos logo on the air intake
Ineos’ logo on the 2020 Mercedes Formula 1 car | Bryn Lennon via Getty Images

If you want evidence of Ineos’ commitment to changing the automotive space rather than just sponsoring it, you can look no further than the ladder-frame chassis of the Ineos Grenadier. In the brand’s own words the ladder-frame chassis is the “backbone of any serious 4X4.” They’re right. Nearly every off-roader worth its salt has been pinned down by a ladder-frame chassis, all the way back to the famous Defender.

However, Ineos isn’t looking to shift the status quo by doing something radically different. No, the Ineos Grenadier is to be a distillation of what everyone is supposed to want in an off-roader. Fortunately, it appears that the brand has simply done what they think is best, rather than ask everyone else. Usually, that line of thinking results in a product that can feel a little too “corporate” if you know what I mean.

The Ineos Grenadier is a new chapter for the brand

The interior of the new Ineos Grenadier, with aircraft-like switches on the ceiling
2021 Grenadier SUV | Ineos

There’s nowhere that this line of thinking is more evident than the interior of the Grenadier. The new off-roader will feature some hand tech to help those who like to get out away from it all. First, there’ll be pre-wired auxiliary switches. Now, what that means is that, for example, if you want to add a winch, no problem. The Grenadier already has the wiring handled, so the addition of a winch, normally a complicated multi-step process, is now somewhat plug-and-play.

There’s also going to be something called “Pathfinder mode”. This feature is for those types who really like to get lost. Really lost. Basically, it’s a Hansel and Gretel-style trail of breadcrumbs. Your in-car GPS is the one leaving them, which gives you a set of navigation points to follow home should you end up well and truly off the beaten path. Of course, there are also expletive-ready grab handles should your driver be… less than skilled.

Big performance and smart thinking

The rear of the Grenadier on a trail, with a special "crash dummy" style livery
2021 Grenadier SUV | Ineos

All in all, the Ineos Grenadier looks like one of the more promising off-road offerings to come up this year. It promises to be plenty capable, and the design team has clearly put a lot of effort into the usability of the vehicle. It’ll be interesting to see just how the Grenadier stacks up against the similarly-minded 2021 Ford Bronco and more importantly, the Land Rover Defender.


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