For years, rumors flew in tech circles that an Apple car is in the works, but the project always seemed like a long shot. Now it’s becoming more clear that this powerhouse company really might be coming out with an electric vehicle. In just a few years, if whispers are true, we could be driving around in cars that operate on the same system as our phones, headphones and laptops.
Codenamed ‘Project Titan’, Apple’s efforts to create a self-driving car first began in 2014. Since then, the project has hit some significant roadblocks within the company, and Apple has stepped back from the project to focus on other concerns several times.
All the way back in 2016, Elon Musk said that Apple’s car project is an “open secret”. The Tesla billionaire went on to say that an electric car from the company would likely be “compelling”.
Since then, news of the potential vehicle has slowed to a trickle, but lately, signs seem to indicate that Project Titan is back on track.
Although Apple’s plans are not yet public, Reuters was able to contact several sources that confirmed the project’s aims to build a passenger vehicle for consumers. According to these reports, central to Apple’s plan is their new battery design that would allow significantly cheaper batteries and a longer range for the vehicles, two problems that existing electric vehicles battle with.
An Apple Car would be a significant leap for Apple when it comes to the supply chain. iPhones are one thing, but an electric vehicle is entirely another. Even for a company with Apple’s vast wealth, a manufacturing partner is probably the most efficient way forward.
According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple is partnering with Hyundai to manufacture these electric cars. In a note to investors first reported by Apple Insider, Kuo claims that the first Apple cars will be built using Hyundai’s E-GMP electric vehicle platform. This partnership could eventually lead to partnerships with GM and European automaker PSA.
Production is rumored to start in 2024, but with COVID-19, we should expect production delays that could push the production of the first vehicles to 2025 or beyond.
While it’s rather strange to think that the company that provides all of our in-home technology might also give us cars in the future, it’s nice to see that the electric vehicle market is expanding. It’s great for the planet, but don’t expect it to be easy on the wallet. Apple’s cars will likely market their models as high-end.