It won't be the first time a Land Rover will be motivated by Bavaria's finest.
Land Rover will soon introduce a new Defender. But while it's working on bringing that to fruition, another company is planning to put the old one back into production. And now we know what will provide its motivation.
Ineos Automotive has signed a contract with BMW to provide engines to keep the "continuation” Defenders rolling off the line, wherever it is they may be built. (Last we heard, Ineos was discussing contracting Ford to build 'em.) Just which engines those might be, we don't know. But BMW indicates there'll be turbocharged, and offered in both gasoline and diesel forms.
It won't be the first time that a Land Rover would be powered BMW engine. The Bavarian automaker bought the entire Rover Group in 1994 and held onto the Land Rover operation until 2000 when it sold it to Ford (but held onto the Mini brand). And over the course of those intervening years, it provided its engines to models like the Range Rover, Freelander, and – yep – even the Defender. Bimmer's 2.8-liter straight-six produced 192 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque to outperform earlier Rover V8-powered versions and make that quickest-accelerating Defender made up to that point.
Ineos Automotive's Projekt Grenadier won't be BMW's first British engine customer, either. Aside from Mini and Rolls-Royce (which are owned by the Bavarian marque), Morgan also gets its engines from Munich – as did Ascari, Bristol, Bentley (for a time), and the legendary McLaren F1.
"Our company is famous for efficient high-performance engines that are among the best in the world”, said BMW exec Pieter Nota. "We offer a broad range of premium, tailor-made drivetrain technologies and services for carmakers and other customers and believe this is a business area with real growth potential.”