Luxury Car Industry To Make Ventilators Amid Coronavirus Crisis
by Olivia Michel
Luxury car companies are answering calls from governments to help make more medical ventilators and face masks to help out during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.
Following on from the luxury brands and superyacht owners helping fight coronavirus, high-end car and electronics brands have now turned their resources to producing medical ventilators and masks. The newly manufactured ventilators will be donated to hospitals around the world in order to treat the most severely-affected COVID-19 patients.
Representatives from the luxury motor industry include Rolls Royce. The car manufacturer has joined a consortium of engineering firms known as the VentilatorChallengeUK, which aims to deliver more than 10,000 ventilator machines for the UK's National Health Service (NHS).
In an official statement posted on the McLaren Racing website, Chairman of the VentilatorChallengeUK Consortium, Dick Elsy, said: “This consortium brings together some of the most innovative companies in the world […] They are working together with incredible determination and energy to scale up production of much-needed ventilators and combat a virus that is affecting people in many countries.”
Elsy concluded with a positive outlook, stating: “I am confident this consortium has the skills and tools to make a difference and save lives.”
Besides making ventilators, Rolls Royce has also deployed its existing fleet of limousines for an altruistic purpose. The cars will be driven by volunteers providing food and medicine deliveries to those most in need. This fleet is joined by an additional pool of BMW cars, which are being loaned to NHS staff free of charge to help with their work commutes.
In a similar move, Jaguar Land Rover have lent the British Red Cross 57 vehicles, including 27 Defenders, in order to deliver food and medicines to vulnerable and elderly people. Another 65 vehicles are being deployed to support the Red Cross organisation which is offering aid across the world, including in Australia, France, South Africa and Spain.
Mercedes, meanwhile, has been working together with University College London clinicians and engineers to develop a breathing aid designed to keep coronavirus patients out of intensive care. The continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device helps covid-19 patients who have developed lung infections to breathe more easily.
Although this year’s Monaco Grand Prix may have been cancelled, a number of Formula one racing teams have also volunteered their expertise and resources at this critical time. Haas F1, McLaren and Red Bull Racing are just some of the names that have joined the efforts of the VentilatorChallengeUK group.
Joining the aid of luxury car manufacturers are a number of electronics brands too. Dyson, which makes some of the best beauty gadgets, will be working with tech company TTP to make 15,000 ventilators.
In a global email to staff, company founder James Dyson said that although “this is clearly a time of grave international crisis” he is "proud of what Dyson engineers and our partners at TTP have achieved” and is “eager to see this new device in production and in hospitals as soon as possible.”
For the latest updates on how the superyacht and luxury industries are responding to the coronavirus pandemic, click here.