Fiat Chrysler CEO says met with Apple CEO Cook, Tesla CEO Musk

“Fiat Chrysler Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne said on Saturday that he had visited the heads of Tesla Motors Inc and Apple Inc during a recent trip to California,” Allison Martell reports for Reuters.

“Marchionne, speaking on the sidelines of the opening of a Maserati dealership near Toronto, said he had met with Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook and Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk, among others, on the trip, during which he also rode in Google Inc’s self-driving car,” Martell reports. “‘I’m incredibly impressed with what that kid has done,’ he said, referring to Musk. With regard to Apple’s Cook, he said: ‘He’s interested in Apple’s intervention in the car, that’s his role.’ Marchionne was not more specific about Apple.”

“Various automakers have been eyeing potential collaboration with Apple and Google even as they view their efforts to develop electric and self-driving cars as a potential competitive threat,” Martell reports. “It is less typical for major automakers’ CEOs to meet with their counterpart at Tesla, which has not collaborated much with established manufacturers.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Keep your friends close but your enemies closer.


  1. One of the best aspects of iOS devices is the way Apple update and refresh legacy models. It would be great if the display on cars can be upgraded in the same way.
    Car companies look to sell you their car, then screw you on maintenance and finally get you to buy a new one as soon as possible. A car company that takes the approach Apple does to their products may make a huge difference in the industry.

    1. My car GPS system came as a component of a “package” that cost thousands of dollars, as I recall. And the dealer is looking for several hundred dollars simply to update the onboard map software. Crazy. Highway robbery, if you ask me.

      I agree that planned utility (eg, through software updates) makes a lot more sense to consumers than planned obsolescence.

  2. The writer is clearly not a “car gal” and she is flat wrong about Tesla’s lack of collaboration with other car makers. Tesla is in shared tech deals with both Toyota (can you say RAV4?) and Mercedes-Benz. Tesla has also put all of its patents in the public domain for any car maker to use (in fact, my own company is looking at a Tesla patent regarding the construction of its battery pack).

    Most of journalism sucks these days.

  3. Google isn’t serious about their ‘self-driving car’. I don’t know what you call these ‘gee whiz’ Google honey pots. But the point seems to be to get people’ attention and make them say ‘gee whiz’. Then Google gets bored and drops one attention whoring project for another, on and on. What a gas. Aether Projects? How’s that for a name?

    OTHER companies are the ones to watch for serious self-driving autos. Clearly, Tesla and Apple want to be part of that market in one way or another.

  4. He stands no chance. He doesn’t get EVs and doesn’t understand why they are coming.

    “He also pledged that Fiat Chrysler would make a stronger entry in the realm of luxury sport utility vehicles.

    “When I see a Range Rover on the street, my blood boils, because we should be able to do a thing like that, and we will,” he said.”

    The countdown timer is running. He needs to have a meeting with Carlos Ghosn and let him explain how to get into the EV business. His dismissiveness toward Elon Musk (that kid) says more about his lack of understanding of his situation than he will ever take away from meetings with Tesla, Google or Apple.

  5. EXCUSE ME….Ferrari….a Fiat Chrysler product… was one of the first to adopt the apple system for in car entertainment. WTF with “keep you enemies closer”. Maybe need to take another look at that comment!

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