Ineos to develop 4×4 off-roader
Petrochemical firm pledges to invest “hundreds of millions of pounds” to set up automotive division in UK to make 4x4 vehicles.
Petrochemical supplier Ineos Group Ltd. has announced plans to invest “hundreds of millions of pounds” to develop a new 4×4 vehicle.
In a statement, Rolle, Switzerland-based Ineos said it will set up a new division, Ineos Automotive, and expects to spend “many hundreds of millions” on developing a 4×4 vehicle that could fill the gap in the market left by the Defender, which has been discontinued by Jaguar Land Rover.
“Following the completion of a six-month feasibility study, Ineos has confirmed that it is to go ahead and build a brand new ‘uncompromising’ 4×4 off-roader,” the statement said. “Whilst the company is one of the largest manufacturers in the world, it will be the first time that Ineos has produced such a vehicle.”
Ineos wants to sell the vehicle for less than 50,000 pounds, and will aim it at farmers, foresters, explorers and enthusiasts. The company is looking to manufacture the off-roader in the UK – although it is also considering options in Europe – with the first cars potentially available from 2020. Ineos Automotive could employ up to 1,000 people if the venture is successful.
“I am a great admirer of the old Land Rover Defender and have enormous respect for its off road capability, and our new 4 x4 has been inspired by it,” said Jim Ratcliffe, Ineos chairman. “But while our off-roader might share its spirit, our new car will be a major improvement on previous models.”
Ineos has 45 manufacturing sites around the world making petrochemicals, including polymers such as PE, PP, PS, and PVS.