Lynn Calder, the CEO of Ineos Automotive, which recently launched the ICE-powered Grenadier off-roader in the United States, believes that a mix of energy sources, including batteries, hydrogen, and petrol-powered hybrids, is the better way forward to fight climate change, as opposed to focusing solely on battery electric vehicles (BEVs).
The statement was made in the United Kingdom, where Calder and other industry representatives spoke at the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) Electrified conference, which had the country’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 100 percent of 1999 levels by 2050 on the agenda, Autocar writes.
Ineos currently offers the Grenadier with BMW-sourced 3.0-litre petrol and diesel engines but plans on building both EV and hydrogen-powered versions of the off-roader. In this context, the brand’s head honcho said that talking about EVs all the time is quite dangerous and that a mix of powertrains will be needed to better tackle the carbon targets of the UK.
Gallery: Ineos Grenadier Demonstrator Hydrogen FCEV
“I think we need a plan, because at the moment, if we just say electric vehicles are the way forward for the UK, and that’s all we are going to have, I think there is a risk we are going to fail and a risk that it is going to be expensive,” Calder said.
Unsurprisingly, Toyota, which has a similar diversification approach for its future lineup (with a fresh emphasis on EVs, however) agreed with Ineos’ boss, with the Japanese automaker’s UK chief saying that if carbon is the enemy, it cannot be solved by one technology alone. “Choice can never be bad,” Toyota UK boss Augustín Martín said, quoted by Autocar, adding that every effort to reduce carbon should be applauded.
On the other hand, the UK Department of Transport’s director of transport decarbonisation, Richard Bruce, didn’t mince words and rebuffed Lynn Calder’s statements, saying that pushing forward with more than one fuel option can be used as an excuse for inaction and that there’s a clear advantage for BEVs given the current timescale involved.
Calder, who took the role of Ineos Automotive CEO in December of last year, backed her statements by saying different vehicles have different use cases, underlining that the Grenadier may be used in remote locations where EV charging infrastructure is close to nonexistent, working hard or towing heavy loads, which is why a hydrogen option makes sense.
The Ineos Grenadier has a £49,000 starting price in the UK.