Richard Branson Hints At Possible Virgin Electric Car – Video

APR 9 2015 BY MIKE ANTHONY 15

We agree with you, Sir Richard Branson (Founder of Virgin Group LTD.) Electric vehicles are sexy, both for racing and for the public road.

Virgin Racing's Formula E vehicle attacking the track.

Virgin Racing’s Formula E vehicle attacking the track.

In fact, they are so sexy that Branson hints that Virgin might just make a consumer EV at some point in the future. No, it won’t be a modified version of the Formula E racer, but wouldn’t that be sweet to drive on public roads?

For those who don’t know, Virgin Racing is a contender in the Formula E series. Virgin takes electric racing very seriously, so we’re eager to see what Virgin dreams up for use on public roads.

With the aspirations that Branson and his company have, we see no reason why they couldn’t/shouldn’t take a stab at an electric car.

Branson adds that EVs are “what is going to make the lives of us and our children more pleasant.”

"Despite the name Virgin, these cars will go all the way!" -Branson

“Despite the name Virgin, these cars will go all the way!” -Branson

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15 Comments on "Richard Branson Hints At Possible Virgin Electric Car – Video"

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The more, the merrier… But it will take them a while to have anything to show.

Actually not. Tesla tinkered their Roadster in the garage and designed Model S too virtually zero budged. Therefore making a compelling electric car is incredibly easy and cheap, because there is zero competition today on markets. Also it helps that Tesla has given all the patents away and they welcome with open arms all their competitors to use their supercharger network.

Virgin could just order the electric drivetrain directly from Tesla before they try to develop their own knowhow.

I’m looking forward to the EVs from Walmart and McDonalds. 😉

Yes EVs will be sold in Walmart, Target, Sears and we can certainly charge in MacDonalds, Subway and all other food chains during the 30 – 45 minutes that we spend on buying food and eating.

Indeed, Google, Apple and Amazon for sure will enter to EV business. And in general, everyone who has extra cash, should invest on electric car start-ups, because established car manufacturers do not have any competitive advantage over newcomers. Actually their traditions and invested capital on ICE technology knowhow is just immense millstone.

If I was to buy one for my then high school teenager, how would that go over?
“Good news, I bought you a car. Bad news, it says Virgin EV on it”

That would have gotten laughs, at my school.

Or e-virgin, which sounds like a bad internet joke from the 90s.

If Branson makes a “Virgin” EV, it will almost certainly be a very limited production supercar, and not an EV for the masses. Not to denigrate Mr. Branson’s plans, but that field is already getting rather crowded, and I doubt one more or less will have much impact on the EV revolution as a whole.

The field is far from crowded.
If one goes back to the early days of the auto there were hundreds of companies (coach builders originally) putting cars on the road. Many failed, many were bought out, and a few large corporations came out on top. History suggests that EVs will follow this evolutionary path.
So, as said above; ‘the more the merrier’ and to which I’ll add ‘may the best designs win’. We will all be winners.

It took 10 years for Tesla because they built from the base when there was no EVs at that time. But today there are 740,000 EVs + Plugins and out of this atleast 400,000 will be EVs.

Also Virgin is much bigger group and can start much faster with a bigger capital base. Apple is also making headway in Electric Cars.

electric-car-insider.com

Lensman> will almost certainly be a very limited production supercar

That would be a good place to start, since you can:

1) start with fairly modest size facilities by automotive standards
2) start with low volume (fewer employees, equipment)
3) have a prayer of being profitable (high margin product)
4) get influential people (including celebrities) interested in using your product
5) build a highly coveted brand
6) get a lot of attention from fawning media
7 change the (slowly changing) prevailing view of electric cars as “golf carts” (because that’s all most folks know)

Why would you want to start with anything other than a limited production supercar?

I admire Nissan for all their vision and effort. But they started on the much harder end of the scale. If they had made a high-performance electric and earned the kind of accolades Tesla has gained, selling the next EV would have been that much easier.

IMO Virgin would not turn up with a wildly different ev but a different business model linked to an emerging technology. Driverless virgin cabs would be more like it.

Good point. Virgin has a reputation for being a trend-setter, not a trend-follower. And just one more high-end EV “supercar” would be following where many others have lead.

Concur Lensman.