Quick, what do you think about when I say “Dyson”? For most people, you think about innovative vacuum cleaners, designed to make basic household cleaning easier. But, apparently, the company has no plans to limit its innovation to household cleaning tools.
Dyson to Lead Innovation
Dyson recently announced plans to invest more than $2 billion developing an electric car. And, because it’s Dyson, this will not be any run of the mill electric vehicle. The company says their design and implementation will result in a “radical” entry into the soon-to-be booming electric car market. Critics say Dyson may be getting into the race a bit too late. They don’t have an established brand in the automotive industry, and the competition for electric cars is getting really hot. Established automakers are quickly building their own plans, and upstart innovator Tesla is in the news just about every week, as it works to deliver a fully-electric family car most folks could afford.
Dyson, however, is not deterred. The company believes it has something special. Hundreds of employees have been working on this project in relative secrecy for several years now, and the company is nearing the point at which it will unveil its plans to the consumer public… and it says it will reveal the actual car by 2020. So, is Dyson a dark horse or a real contender? At this point, it’s tough to tell. To date, Dyson doesn’t have any actual … cars. There’s no prototype and no factory to build any cars once they do have a working prototype. Less than three years before the promised unveiling, Dyson still doesn’t have – or, at least, hasn’t released – any specs. What will this car’s top speed be? What is the market? What will the price point be? So far, on those questions, there’s nothing to report.
New Plans, Old Ideas
But people at the top of the leadership chart at Dyson have been working on this dream for decades. They went about it a bit differently than automakers, building motors and batteries and testing them out in their other, much smaller, products. With each success, the company got that much closer to the dream of its own branded electric car. So, what do we know at this point? They promise a car that is “radical and different” which is good. But different how, exactly? That much isn’t known at this point. There have been some reports that the Dyson electric car will not be a middle class “grocery getter.” It will be something high-end. But, again, that’s all rumor.
At this point, though, rumor is enough to get people talking. And Dyson has accomplished that. What they do next will determine if they are ready to compete with the big boys … especially those who already have a solid lead.
Ronn Torossian is the Founder and CEO of the New York based public relations firm 5WPR: one of the 20 largest PR Firms in the United States.