Pro-Brexit billionaire Jim Ratcliffe puts EV plans on hold, blaming ‘tariffs, timings and taxation’

Jim Ratcliffe’s Ineos Group is delaying its electric sport utility vehicle, blaming waning consumer demand for EVs and uncertainty around tariffs.

Production of the Fusilier, a smaller vehicle than the Grenadier 4×4 that the company started selling last year, had been expected to begin in 2027. Ineos didn’t specify a new timeline in an emailed statement Wednesday.

Ratcliffe, the petrochemical mogul who is now also a minority investor in Premier League club Manchester United, had outlined plans earlier this year to offer both a battery-only version of the Fusilier, and a range-extender option using a small gas engine.

However, a range-extender would be banned in both Europe and the UK in 2035, or in 2030 in the UK if the Labour Party wins Thursday’s general election, an Ineos Automotive spokesperson said.

“We are delaying the launch of the Ineos Fusilier for two reasons: reluctant consumer uptake of EVs, and industry uncertainty around tariffs, timings and taxation,” the company said in its emailed statement. “There needs to be long-term clarity from policymakers” to meet net zero targets.

The decision comes after Ratcliffe told Bloomberg TV in an interview in February that Ineos was “fully in” when it came to low-emission vehicles.

Ineos planned to develop the model along with auto supplier Magna International Inc. A spokesperson for Magna confirmed Ineos’ decision to Austrian newspaper Kronen Zeitung, which reported the news earlier.

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