The Munro MK_1 Is an Electric SUV for Hardcore Off-Roading

Do you love the old Land Rover Defender but wish it was electric? The MK_1 may be for you.

We may earn a commission from links on this page.
Munro MK_1 SUV
Photo: Munro

Do you like the idea of the Ineos Grenadier but wish it was electric? Are you perhaps looking for something to replace the Bollinger B1-shaped hole in your heart? If so, then perhaps the Munro MK_1 is the electric off-roader for you.

The Munro MK_1 is a brand new Land Rover Defender-esque SUV that was designed in the UK and will be built in Scotland. It’s also fully electric. Oh, and no, it’s not affiliated with Sandy Munro, at least as far as we know. According to the press release, the company is “named after a Scottish mountain that exceeds a height of 3000 feet.” So now you can impress everyone on trivia night if that question ever comes up.

The MK_1 (Ugh, can they not just call it the MK1? That would be so much less annoying to type.) comes with two motor options: one making 295 hp and another making 375 hp. There are also two battery options: 61 kWh and 82 kWh. Just don’t expect much in terms of range. Munro estimates a maximum of 190 miles on a full charge, which it says should allow for 16 hours of off-roading. On a CCS charger, it should also be able to fully charge in about 30 minutes.

Advertisement
Image for article titled The Munro MK_1 Is an Electric SUV for Hardcore Off-Roading
Photo: Munro

Munro also says the most powerful version should hit 62 mph in 4.9 seconds, but the MK_1 isn’t really built for road use. Since the two-speed transmission is geared to maximize torque while off-roading, the top speed is only 80 mph. And the motor really does have a lot of torque. We’re not talking Mercedes-AMG S 63 E Performance figures here, but 516 lb-ft should be plenty for the trails this SUV was designed to tackle.

Advertisement

The motor’s torque also allows the MK_1 to tow up to 7,700 lbs and haul 2,200 lbs of stuff. And while it offers four-wheel drive, you don’t get a motor on each wheel like in a Rivian. Instead, there’s one single motor that powers a more traditional mechanical 4WD system that Munro says is better for off-roading and easier to maintain.

Speaking of tradition, the MK_1 is built on an old-school ladder frame that’s made out of 5mm-thick galvanized steel. It also uses live axles and comes standard with a locking center differential. If you want locking front and rear diffs, that’s an available option, as well.

Advertisement
Image for article titled The Munro MK_1 Is an Electric SUV for Hardcore Off-Roading
Photo: Munro

And while the design may look like it was slapped together by a couple of drunk men in a barn, Munro says that’s by design. The body panels are meant to be more easily reparable, as the SUV is meant to last through decades of off-roading. Yes, we said off-roading again. Have you picked up on the fact that the MK_1 was designed for off-roading yet?

Advertisement

As CEO Russell Peterson put it:

The engineering is unashamedly agricultural in nature. Some people see the term agricultural as potentially derogatory, but at Munro, we certainly don’t. Agricultural vehicles feature some of the most sophisticated technology you can imagine. But above all, they are engineered to do the job, no matter how much punishment they soak up, and to keep doing it year after year. The Munro has been built to the most robust standards possible and to be fully operational in 30, 40, 50 years’ time.

Advertisement

And it should actually be pretty good at its intended purpose, too. The MK_1 has a 50/50 weight distribution, 18.9 inches of ground clearance, an 84-degree approach angle, a 51-degree departure angle, and a 148-degree breakover angle. You can also option a stronger roof if you’re worried about rollovers or falling boulders.

Munro also promises there will be plenty of room to bring your friends along on your off-roading adventures. There’s seating for five, and with a 130-inch wheelbase, passengers should all have plenty of room. The front seat was designed to slide back far enough for the driver to use a laptop without it touching the steering wheel, and even with the front seats fully back, Munro promises there will still be legroom to spare for rear passengers.

Advertisement

As far as storage goes, the rear cargo area is lined with plywood and features aluminum tracks that are reportedly strong enough to hold 880 lbs of stuff in place. There are also two external storage compartments that Munro calls “saddle bag stowage” for your charging cables, tools, and dirty gloves.

Image for article titled The Munro MK_1 Is an Electric SUV for Hardcore Off-Roading
Photo: Munro
Advertisement

And while the interior looks as agricultural as the exterior, you do get some modern tech, such as DC converters for running a winch or light bar, two USB C outlets, two wireless charging pads, and two household outlets that Munro says can be used to power a microwave or tea kettle. So if you don’t like missing tea time while on the trail, Munro’s got you covered. Oh, and the infotainment system also offers support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The MK_1 comes with a five-year/100,000-mile warranty that Munro calls “super flexible.” According to the release, “We recognise and respect our customers’ right to repair and maintain their vehicle, and their doing so will not invalidate the warranty. Customers who are unable, or do not wish to look after the vehicle themselves, can either bring their Munro to their local agent, or our service fleet will visit them and carry out the work onsite at their convenience.”

Advertisement

The company also says it will have a program to recondition or replace batteries as they wear out, saying, “With your average electric vehicle, the battery is designed to last the life of the car, so in most cases, customers will never have to worry about replacing it. But because the Munro is engineered to last several decades, we will either recondition or replace the battery pack for customers when the time comes.”

Pricing in the UK starts at £49,995, and according to Munro, the MK_1 will come to the U.S. in 2023. How much it will cost when it eventually crosses the pond, though, is still up in the air.

Advertisement
Image for article titled The Munro MK_1 Is an Electric SUV for Hardcore Off-Roading
Photo: Munro