However, production could be in Europe, he conceded, adding that there are a wealth of redundant car plants in Germany, which could reduce start-up costs, as well as the possibility of EU funding. Using a contract manufacturer would also be considered.
Brexit could throw hurdles in the way of production in the UK, but the billionaire said he had faith that a deal would be done.
“There will be a common sense outcome to Brexit,” he said. “Big commercial organisations in countries such as Germany are not going to be cut off from such a big market – they will not allow politicians to get overly emotional about it.”
Ineos is closing in on designs for the new car, which will come with a 3-litre diesel, 4-litre petrol and hybrid power trains. A team of 200 engineers is being assembled for the engineering and design work and Mr Ratcliffe said once production starts a plant would employ 1,000 staff and support up to 10,000 jobs in the supply chain.
He dismissed concerns that privately held Ineos has no experience in the complicated world of car design where other small UK companies have failed.