Startup electric hypercar maker Dendrobium Automotive has reaffirmed that its radical electric D-1 will be built in the UK. This comes just days after Sir James Dyson announced that his planned electric car will be manufactured in his Singaporean factory.
Alanis Morissette would no doubt point out the irony that the concept of the Dendrobium D-1 was first envisaged by a company from Singapore. However, due to a lack of skills and expertise on the Southeast Asian island, Vanda Electrics turned to the UK to make the D-1 a reality.
The company is working with Williams Advanced Engineering – the technology offshoot from the Formula 1 racing team – on the initial development of the D-1. With a promised 1,800hp on offer from the electric powertrain, help from a race team certainly seems wise.
In fact, the D-1 shares much technology with the motorsport industry. Something which no doubt made choosing the UK as a manufacturing base an easier option.
Carbon fibre is used extensively throughout the D-1, forming the basis of the carbon fibre tub chassis and other key elements throughout. The lightweight material also features substantially in the two-seater interior, and will be important in pegging weight to the 1,750kg target set by the company.
Dyson ‘very wrong’
Whilst reaffirming the decision to produce the D-1 in the UK, Dendrobium admits that Brexit does cause concerns for the project.
Chairman and CEO of Dendrobium Automotive, Nigel Gordon-Stewart stated, “Brexit is unquestionably causing real issues in investment in the UK” and that the “current ‘brain drain’ by EV development companies in the USA and Far East is also a huge concern.”
Despite this, Gordon-Stewart believes “British engineering is, without doubt, the best in the world” and that the decision by Dyson to build in Singapore “seems very wrong” as a result.
The Dendrobium D-1 made a public debut earlier this year at the exclusive Salon Privé garden party event, attracting attention with its distinctive ‘Bio-Aerial Locomotion’ doors.
Dendrobium has also recently signed technology sharing agreements with an Australian-based battery company, and an intellectual property firm in the United States. The deal will be key to ensuring the powertrain and battery performance can meet the bold claims for the D-1.