Gordon Murray Group, the British company that designs F1 race cars and founded the McLaren F1, is throwing its hat in the ring and joining other companies that make electric vehicles (“EVs”) in a bid to keep up with the times, which now favor vehicle electrification.
In 2005, Gordon Murray, the chairman and founder of Gordon Murray Group, cut ties with McLaren in order to be free to develop supercars on his own. He recently announced that he was hard at work designing a platform that would enable him to design electric SUVs and hatchbacks that are mid-sized.
In the next five years, Murray needs a $424 million investment to go toward setting up a business unit for electronics, including establishing new headquarters among other expenditure points. He plans to raise this money by putting together a variety of ventures, which will include licensing some of his EV platform products to other makers of electric vehicles.
Gordon Murray Group, whose stock is closely held, is undertaking EV development activities while it also continues to pursue its V-12 engine vehicles. Murray admits that he and his team are clinging onto their powerful gasoline engine vehicles, and they will continue to do so for as long as this remains possible.
The changes planned by Murray represent the most recent manifestation of the shocks sent through the automotive world by the skyrocketing interest in electric vehicles by both motorists and governments. Other race car makers are also feeling the squeeze, and they are taking steps to pivot.
For example, Daimler AG revealed that it was directing its supercar team to work closely with the AMG division of the company in order to create electric race cars. In the same vein, Lotus Cars and Renault SA are also working on a battery-powered vehicle after they took over an F1 race team a number of years ago. Speaking of race team takeovers, McLaren completed a deal to sell 33% of its department focused on race cars. This deal was partially motivated by the need to strengthen the financial health of the company.
Last year, Murray’s company unveiled its T.50 supercar, which costs approximately $3.4 million. Only 100 of these vehicles are being made, and every single one of them was bought in only 48 hours after an announcement was made of their availability. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2022.
Two other supercars, dubbed Project 2 and Project 3, will also be built; those models are going to be more affordable than the T.50. Again, only 100 units of each of these models will be built, and both supercars will run on large internal combustion engines. Murray asserts that creating such supercars will continue until regulations make it impossible for that style of cars to be made, and then hybrids and fully electric versions will be designed.
As Murray and his team are still hanging onto ICE vehicles, new entrants into the EV space such as Net Element (NASDAQ: NETE), which is merging with Mullen Technologies Inc., are likely to establish a strong foothold and take full advantage of their head start.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Net Element (NASDAQ: NETE) are available in the company’s newsroom at http://ibn.fm/NETE
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