Dyson, the UK company best known for its pricey vacuum cleaners, is building an electric car. The vehicle is set to be unveiled in 2020, and Dyson says it already has a team of “over 400 strong” working on the project. The company plans to invest over £2 billion ($2.6 billion) in the endeavor, drawing on its battery and digital motor expertise to further development.
Speaking to The Guardian, the company’s founder and CEO James Dyson said the car wouldn’t be a sports car, but would be “radically different” to current electric vehicles. He said consumers would have to “wait and see” to find out what it looks like. Dyson didn’t suggest a price, but warned it would be an expensive model: “Maybe the better figure is how much of a deposit they would be prepared to put down.”
Dyson announced the news in a letter sent to employees, where he discussed his long-held goal to reduce emissions from trucks and cars. “It has remained my ambition to find a solution to the global problem of air pollution,” wrote Dyson. “At this moment, we finally have the opportunity to bring all our technologies together in a single product. So I wanted you to hear it directly from me: Dyson has begun work on an battery electric vehicle, due to be launched by 2020.”
Not many other details are known about the vehicle at the moment, but rumors of Dyson’s interest in electric cars have been swirling for years. The company recently hired executives from both Aston Martin and Tesla, and Dyson’s ambitions in the area were accidentally disclosed in government document last year.
Founded in 1987, Dyson is best known for its home appliances, including its bagless vacuum cleaners, fans, heaters, and hair dryer. The company’s sales have grown in recent years as it expanded into Asia, with revenue for 2016 reportedly hitting £2 billion ($2.43 billion). It’s also invested heavily in R&D, opening up new research facilities in both the UK and Singapore. Dyson says it hopes Asia will also be a big market for its future car. “We see a very large market for this car in the far east,” said Dyson.