“BMW and Apple may rekindle a courtship put on hold after an exploratory visit by executives of the world’s top maker of electronic gadgets to the headquarters of the word’s biggest seller of premium cars,” Edward Taylor and Julia Love report for Reuters. “Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook went to BMW’s headquarters last year and senior Apple executives toured the carmaker’s Leipzig factory to learn how it manufactures the i3 electric car, two sources familiar with the talks told Reuters. The dialogue ended without conclusion because Apple appears to want to explore developing a passenger car on its own, one of the sources said. Also, BMW is being cautious about sharing its manufacturing know-how because it wants to avoid becoming a mere supplier to a software or internet giant.”

“During the visit, Apple executives asked BMW board members detailed questions about tooling and production and BMW executives signaled readiness to license parts, one of the sources said,” Taylor and Julia Love report. “‘Apple executives were impressed with the fact that we abandoned traditional approaches to car making and started afresh. It chimed with the way they do things too,’ a senior BMW source said.”

“BMW has realized next-generation vehicles cannot be built without more input from telecoms and software experts, and Apple has been studying how to make a self-driving electric car as it seeks new market opportunities beyond phones,” Taylor and Julia Love report. “Earlier this year, BMW’s new R&D chief Klaus Froehlich said his company and Apple had much in common, including a focus on premium branding, an emphasis on evolving products and a sense of aesthetically pleasing design.”

“If Apple decided to sell a car it could make sense to find a partner to help with industrial scale production, retail and repair, since demand for such a vehicle could be high… If only 1 percent of Apple’s annual iPhone customers decided to order a car, it would need to make 1.69 million vehicles,” Taylor and Julia Love report. “Even BMW Group, which made just over 2 million cars last year, would struggle to free up capacity.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: If Apple were to partner with an existing vehicle maker in some fashion, they certainly picked a worthy candidate.

SEE ALSO:
Apple said to be in talks to use BMW i3 carbon fiber body as basis for its own electric car – July 27, 2015
BMW: Our talks with Apple don’t involve developing or building a car – March 5, 2015
Apple wants to start producing vehicles as soon as 2020, sources say – February 19, 2015
Why Apple is all charged up about electric cars – February 19, 2015
Apple Car should have Detroit shuddering in absolute fear – February 19, 2015
Lawsuit claims Apple poaching auto engineers to build large-scale battery division – February 19, 2015
Apple poached workers for new battery division, A123 Systems lawsuit claims – February 18, 2015
Apple Car: Apple’s ambition knows no bounds – February 18, 2015
Rethinking the Apple Car. Rethinking Apple. – February 18, 2015
Forget the rumor: Apple will never build cars – February 17, 2015
The real battle Apple is waging in autos – February 17, 2015
O’Leary: Yes, give me the Apple car – February 17, 2015
Will Apple become a car maker or a platform/content aggregator? – February 17, 2015
An Apple Car is exactly what investors want – February 17, 2015
Apple’s electric car dreams may bring auto industry nightmares – February 17, 2015
Jean-Louis Gassée: The fantastic Apple Car is a fantasy – February 16, 2015
Apple is already positioned to be a car company in many ways – February 16, 2015
Why Tim Cook would want to build an Apple Car – February 14, 2015
Apple working on self-driving electric car, source says – February 14, 2015
Apple’s project ‘Titan’ gears up to challenge Tesla in electric cars – February 13, 2015
Apple’s next big thing: The Apple Car? – February 13, 2015
Apple hiring auto engineers and designers – February 13, 2015