The Defender by Land Rover has been a staple of farmers, gamekeepers and of course, the Royal Family
- it looks like the iconic Landy Defender may have been poised to make a comeback, with a re-thought version created by UK company Ineos - however, that now looks unlikely, after the British chemical company, with a £38 billion pound turnover, were warded off by mention of 'Vanity Project'
The chemical firm planned on building a Defender-like model, dubbed as "An uncompromising 4x4 off-roader" after identifying a gap in the market.
The initial plan was to have the first production model by 2020, producing just 15,000 a year, with prices mimicking previous models, and specs.
Powertrains are yet to be decided, however Tom Crotty stated "We are looking at a range of options for powertrains. Hybrid technology could well be on the cards, especially because it fwould help with emission management, but we would want to retain its off-road values."
It also looks like an EV and a Diesel option would be available. A name has yet to be decided for the Ineos Defender, however with a project time required of three years, likely due for the need for a factory to be built from the ground up.
The model isn't to be a modern SUV, it will follow more in the footsteps of the old-school Defender, with rugged capabilities, rather than plush leather. However, it will retain the spirit of the Defender without being a carbon copy.
Ineos is one of the biggest manufacturing companies in the world, however, this is the first time they have delved into auto manufacturing.
Jaguar Land Rover is extremely protective of the Defender. Only last year, it stopped an all terrain vehicle, by a Canadian company - Bombardier, using its name 'Defender' for their 4x4.
Billionaire Jim Ratcliffe has the vision to rethink the Defender, after being a longterm aficionado of the brand, and the Defender in particular. Last year, he approached JLR about buying the intellectual property of the vehicle - the answer was a firm no.
JLR have already announced plans to release a brand new model in the next few years, whilst also repurposing retro models.
The warning - as yet to be confirmed - leaves the future of the Ineos Defender uncertain, with Jaguar Land Rover keen to protect their 67 year legacy, regardless of it not meeting safety or environmental standards.
It is believed that around 80% are still on the road despite age and condition.