The world is inching closer to fully embracing battery-powered cars and it isn't very far out in the future that traditional combustion engines will be relegated to museums. Elon Musk's Tesla has been a pioneer in introducing electric cars that the masses can afford, and brands such as Toyota, Volkswagen, Daimler and others have followed suit injecting large capital in development on electric vehicles (EV). Now though, it isn't just the auto manufacturers who are hoping to bank on the EV era. Dyson Ltd, a British firm mainly known for manufacturing vacuum cleaners, hand drier and air filters, has laid out plans to bring out an electric car by 2020. The firm's seriousness on the matter is quite clear as it is investing GBP 1 billion ($1.34 billion) on the development of the car and another billion pounds on the development of the solid-state batteries. This investment figure has dwarfed any sum spent by the brand on R&D of vacuum cleaners or other appliances. Not only has Dyson surpassed any of its own investment, but according to Bloomberg the total sum is even bigger than what Tesla has invested on R&D in the past five years.
The company's founder James Dyson has specified that his electric car will be "radically different" from those that have so far been developed. “There’s no point doing something that looks like everyone else’s. It is not a sports car and not a very cheap car,” Bloomberg quoted him as saying.
While lithium-ion batteries are popular among most electric car manufacturers, Dyson plans to use solid-state batteries, which Dyson says are smaller, more efficient, easier to charge and to recycle.
Not just a separate wing of operations, electric cars are expected to become the prime focus of the company over the years to come while it will also continue to manufacture the other products. Dyson said the company already has 400 engineers dedicated to its car project, which has been working in secret for the past two-and-a-half years. In the past year, the company has made a number of prominent hires from Aston Martin and Tesla. Dyson employs about 4,000 in the U.K.