James Dyson's electric car will have driverless elements and be totally self-made

 
Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
The Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Launch Event
Dyson's car will not be fully autonomous (Source: Getty)

Sir James Dyson has said the company's electric cars will have "some driverless in it" and will be completely self-made, rather than relying on parts made by other companies.

The British entrepreneur finally revealed the plans for an electric car in September, confirming speculation of the move from vacuums to vehicles.

No decision has yet been taken on where the production of the cars will take place, said Dyson, speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show on Sunday morning. Dyson manufactures its products in Malaysia and Singapore.

Read more: Dyson has appointed a new chief executive as it embarks on electric car

"Of course that is coming, slowly, we mustn't rush that" he said, referring to driverless technology

"It's interesting because we have to develop everything... battery technology, because that's crucial to it, electric motors... so it will be an entire Dyson car, not other components," he said.

"We're going to make it ourselves, whether that's in the far east, or wherever, we haven't decided yet. But it's really about component supply and skills.

"We will go where it's best to make the car," he added.

But the former RAF base Hullavington where it's building a new research centre will be used for testing the vehicles.

But he warned of a major shortage of skills in the UK.

"We're hundreds of thousands engineers short at the moment and I think we'll be 2m engineers short by 2022.

He also said it was "madness" that the UK asks foreign students studying engineering to leave the country.

Read more: It's official: Dyson's planning an electric car, to be launched by 2020

"What I'm much more interested in is keeping engineers here who have studied at British universities," he said.

"I've been speaking to the government for years about it. Damian Green at the home office for example told me if we allowed engineering students to stay, a whole lot of universities would pop up having spurious engineering courses, which is nonsense," he said, adding that the situation was at an impasse.

Dyson has opened its own institute of technology that offers engineering degrees and training to help address the shortage.

Related articles