Following speculation about where the ‘New’ Land Rover Defender from INEOS will be built, INEOS has felt compelled to declare it “will not be a Defender”.
Earlier this month we reported that the ‘new’ Land Rover Defender from INEOS could be built at Ford’s engine plant in Wales.
The initial story came from the BBC, but INEOS are less than impressed that the news came out, and have decided they need to clear a few things up after a BBC Wales reporter declared last week that a decision to build the new 4×4 in Wales was imminent.
In a statement released on Friday, INEOS say sensitive negotiations are not helped by speculation and ‘leaks’ in the media, claiming the leak must have come from inside the government in an effort to influence the decision.
INEOS went on to say that they will make a decision by the end of the year on where the new car – Project Grenadier – will be built, and that they won’t be influenced by ‘silly politics’.
INEOS also felt compelled to declare that they are not intending to “resurrect the Land Rover Defender”. They said:
We are building an all-new 4×4 vehicle from the ground up, which meets all current safety and legislative requirements. It will be a robust, no-nonsense utility vehicle, with an emphasis on reliability, durability and peerless off-road capability. It will have its own name, more angles than curves, and have a wheel at each corner. It will not be a Defender.
It’s a clear statement of facts, but INEOS can’t really expect us all not to refer to Project Grenadier as the ‘New’ Land Rover Defender when Jim Ratcliffe, INEOS boss, has clearly stated that they are “building a spiritual successor to the Defender” – as he drove around in a Land Rover Defender (below).