Aha! When the British firm Dyson acquired innovative solid-state battery startup Sakti3 last October, we suspected it wasn’t about better batteries for handheld vacuum cleaners.
Now a government document obtained by The Guardian appears to reveal that Dyson is developing an EV with public support.
As The Guardian reports, the UK’s recently released National Infrastructure Delivery Plan includes the following statement: “The government is funding Dyson to develop a new battery electric vehicle at their headquarters in Malmesbury, Wiltshire. This will secure £174m of investment in the area, creating over 500 jobs, mostly in engineering.”
A Dyson spokesman refused to comment about the recent revelation. However, last year, when asked if the company was working on an EV, Dyson CEO Max Conze said, “We are ruling nothing out. Like our friends in Cupertino [Apple] we are also unhealthily obsessive when it comes to taking apart our products to make them better.”
The company has said it plans to invest £1 billion (about $1.4 billion) in battery technology over the next five years.
Founder Sir James Dyson has a long history as an inventor and entrepreneur, having patented such handy items as the Rotork Sea Truck and Ballbarrow back in the 1970s. Dyson’s bagless vacuum cleaners, bladeless fans and the Airblade hand dryer that’s familiar to air travelers all use small, light and efficient electric motors, so the potential synergies with automobiles are plain.