Currently reading: Defender-esque Bollinger B1 gets removable glass top
American start-up recently restyled its Defender-esque heavy duty SUV ahead of launch to boost efficiency
James Attwood, digital editor
3 mins read
27 September 2018

Bollinger's B1 electric SUV will be available with a fully removable glass top, in addition to the option of an aluminium roof, the company has announced. 

Six pieces of glass, which can be removed individually or as one, make up the car's roof, locking into a non-removable roll cage structure. The side windows and rear screen can also be removed - the only glass which must remain in place is the windscreen, says the company. In the rendering of the model issued, the doors are also removed, although the company only states that "all glass (minus the windshield) will be removable."

The SUV was recently given styling tweaks during development, to improve the aerodynamic efficiency of the Land Rover Defender-like EV. 

The American start-up electric SUV manufacturer says its B1 SUV, which it claims to be the most extreme and durable battery-powered off-roader, has been tweaked to allow airflow through the top of the bonnet from the front of the car, and setting the headlights in a grille. 

The SUV, which is due to launch in mid-2019, formerly generated over 400kg of lift at the front, and almost 350kg of downforce at the rear. To equalise these, the front grille and bonnet vent concept has been implemented, slightly tweaking the look of the car's front end. 

Bollinger Motors, based in Hobart in upstate New York, is in the final stages of developing its new B1 SUV. The all-wheel-drive machine features front- and rear-motors that combine to produce 355bhp and 472lb ft of torque. The power will be controlled by front and rear electronic locking differentials, and twin two-speed range gearboxes to control the torque.

It will be offered with a 60kWh battery, giving a 120-mile range, with the firm intending to offer a 100kWh battery with a 200-mile range.


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Bollinger engineer John Hutchinson said: “There’s no other electric SUV like this. Electric drivetrains are great for off-road use, because they offer plenty of torque at low RPM. The B1 is designed for fun off-roading, or for use as a farm vehicle. Those vehicles don’t travel great distances, so range is less of an issue.”

The machine features a stripped-out interior with a boxy exterior design that resembles a Land Rover Defender. It features aluminium chassis and bodywork, designed to make it easy to manufacture, practical for off-road use and simple to replace panels. A steel roll cage has been added for safety.

The B1 is designed for use in extreme off-road conditions, and as such has 15.5 inches of ground clearance and 10-inch wheel travel. It is 3810mm long and 1943mm wide, with a wheelbase of 2667mm. With the rear seats removed it has a 2690-litre capacity.

The design takes advantage of the lack of engine up front to feature a distinctive ‘pass-through’ area in the front storage compartment, allowing long loads to fit inside the vehicle.

The B1 was the idea of industrial designer Robert Bollinger, who founded the company that now employs ten people in 2014. The firm claims to have received 10,000 expressions of interest since the project was first announced, and is currently evaluating manufacturing partners in the US.

While the B1 is focused on the American market, the firm is aiming to start exporting models in 2020, principally to the Middle East.

Related stories: 

Land Rover Defender review 

Land Rover Discovery review 

Land Rover Discovery Sport review 

Join the debate


7 November 2017

really horrible.

27 September 2018

- and what a terrible name.

7 November 2017

Looks a bit wide for UK tastes, couldn't see it fitting through a farm gate.

Alright for wide American roads and ranches.

7 November 2017

resembles the ''geoff'' top gear made a couple of years ago

7 November 2017

Anyone who thought the LR Defender is the boxiest car design ever has just been, well and truly, proved wrong.

7 November 2017

Given the clever metal-working machines available now, I'm surprised they went for such a boxy body.  It's not at all necessary.  It's the styling (lack of) that lets it down as everything else is great.  I wonder if Land Rover are looking to take legal action against them - as they are threatening Ineos over the boxy 4x4 design?  Yeah, good luck with that, Land Rover.

If the Bollinger is sub-£35,000 then Land Rover will have something to be concerned about.  It won't appeal to the hipsters, like the new Defender will (if indeed it ever arrives!) but it will appeal to many.  They just have to change that shape, though.  It looks like a bad kit car from the 1970s.

7 November 2017

"......... the company that now employs ten people in 2014" ? it's almost 2018 now.

12 November 2017
russ13b wrote:

"......... the company that now employs ten people in 2014" ? it's almost 2018 now.

I read it as he founded the company in 2014 and that it now employs 10 people - non of them stylists by the look of it.

7 November 2017

The point of a Land Rover was that you could put a load of stuff in it and then drive it, literally, across Africa.  Through jungles, swamps, deserts and lots of places without electricty!!!!

This is a toy.

8 November 2017
If it is meant to be funny, it works.


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