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James Dyson demonstrating his ContraRotator washing machine. Photo: Michiel Hendryckx/Wikimedia Commons

Dyson – the company best known for its innovative vacuum cleaners and fans – is now setting its sights on developing electric vehicles.

Company founder and chief engineer James Dyson revealed the plan to launch a “radical” new electric car by 2020 to his 8,000+ employees in an email this week, according to multiple reports.

But Dyson kept many other details secret from his employees and the media – including an estimate of what the price per vehicle would be, production numbers, and the vehicle’s mileage range.

Dyson did promise the design would be drastically different than any other electric vehicle currently in production.

Car companies manufacturing electric vehicles include Tesla, BMW, Hyundai and Nissan, while Volkswagen, Volvo, Honda and others have committed to offering electric or hybrid versions of existing models in the future.

Google and other big players are also trekking toward equally-ambitious goals – like self-driving vehicles.

One of the specifics Dyson did release is budget – which involves an investment of $2.7 billion dollars. Half of which will go toward the development of the battery, and the other half toward the design of the car, according to Dyson.

A group of about 400 employees has been working on the development in secret for the last two years. The motor has been designed, but there is still no working prototype, or factory site, according to Dyson.

The Dyson company has gained a reputation as a “reinventor of the wheel” of sorts – revolutionizing the household appliance landscape by introducing bagless and cordless vacuum cleaners, bladeless fans, and other intelligent products such as the $400 “Supersonic” hair dryer, as well as a line of humidifiers, hand dryers and lighting items.

The company’s current line of products, and its list of more than 10,000 patents, demonstrates its expertise in advanced batteries. Additionally, Dyson had previously developed filters for diesel engines to reduce particulate pollution, so focusing on an electric car actually isn’t too far of a stretch for the entrepreneur.  

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