Apple reportedly discussing ‘Apple Car’ with automotive suppliers

On Wednesday, DigiTimes shared alleged details on Project Titan (“Apple Car”) autonomous vehicle development in Cupertino. Apple is reportedly in “preliminary cooperation negotiations” with top automotive electronics suppliers as the company continues to hire new employees from Tesla and other manufacturers.

vehicle under wraps

Juli Clover for MacRumors:

DigiTimes claims that Apple is working to establish a factory in the United States, and that there is a production plan in place with preliminary technology specifications.

Apple chip supplier TSMC is reportedly working with Apple on some kind of “self-driving chip” at an R&D plant. TSMC is also collaborating with STMicroelectronics to further develop gallium nitride (GaN) technology that will be used in hybrid car converters and chargers, and DigiTimes says that this work is rumored to be related to the ‌Apple Car‌.

According to DigiTimes, Apple will unveil an ‌Apple Car‌ in 2024 to 2025, and those in the component industry have said that the ‌Apple Car‌ model is “similar to Tesla.”

MacDailyNews Note: In August 2018, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo wrote in a note to clients, “We expect that Apple Car, which will likely be launched in 2023–2025, will be the next star product. The reasons for this are as follows: (1) Potentially huge replacement demands are emerging in the auto sector because it is being redefined by new technologies. The case is the same as the smartphone sector 10 years ago; (2) Apple’s leading technology advantages (e.g. AR) would redefine cars and differentiate Apple Car from peers’ products; (3) Apple’s service will grow significantly by entering the huge car finance market via Apple Car, and (4) Apple can do a better integration of hardware, software, and service than current competitors in the consumer electronics sector and potential competitors in the auto sector.”


  1. I’ll believe that major car manufacturers are interested in using Apple’s technology when it happens. Car manufacturers are very suspicious of anyhthing not invented by themselves, irrespective of how bad their version might be.

    1. I don’t believe Apple will offer their technology to automotive manufacturers. It’s just not their style. They will own the whole widget.

      Apple will outsource parts production, and might outsource assembly to someone like Magna (though perhaps not, if they also intend to completely reinvent and on-shore the manufacturing). But Apple will want to own the customer, fully leverage hardware/software/finance/services integration, and manage the entire experience.

  2. I have never wavered in Apple brining vehicles to market since Project Titan became known. Bob Mansfield is a wizard for bringing programs to life at Apple with skeleton crews!

    Manfield just publicly retired. Job well done and deserved!

    But in Bob’s leadership, he slashed what quickly became a bloated backlog of Automotive insiders, with bumbling and cross-over objectives and responsibilities. Bob slashed well over a thousand people working on the program.

    It was Apple’s job to report this to the media as working on autonomous driving solutions, not an actual vehicle.

    Outside of CarPlay, when has Apple ever brought a major solution to market that is a partnership with multiple brands and players? That’s a rhetorical question of course…

    Apple continued to hire lead engineers from Porsche regarding hybrid technologies, and others involved with suspension systems from BMW. Sorry folks, these major hires have nothing do with autonomous software and LiDAR. Nothing. And for big-time VP’s to bolt from what they love to being put on some camera systems for Apple? Uh no. That is NOT what they jumped ship for to head over to Cupertino.

    Mansfield finished the bulk of the work. The heavy lifting and “from scratch” work and design after five-years is now done. The job left on the table now is to bring it together, to get pull technologies together. It’s one thing to make something in a lab, it’s another to design it for low-cost, volume, manufacturing in a reliable fashion.

    It appears Apple is cresting that hill as I type. RFQ’s via specs. It means Apple’s nearly zero’d in on what they want to bring to market, and yes, it’s a vehicle.

    My only question: Like any major costly component, Apple eventually brings them all in-house. Thus, when will Apple break into their own battery chemistry and outsourced battery production? They’ll do it eventually, the only question is, when?…

    1. I’ve been hearing about Apple building an “Apple Car” for more than a decade. Hell, a few years back people were even reporting about an “Apple Car” out on a test track and then those people claiming that Apple would be shipping an “Apple Car” within a year from then.

      No matter how many nebulous reports come out, until someone has some definitive informatio (photo of “the car” or “screen shots of the interface” this is still 100% rumor and conjectu

      At the moment I put this into the same category as Apple making an Apple branded TV set — which has been rumored (and even “imminent” at times) for many, many years.

      And more to the point, when CarPlay was first introduced Apple said it was going to be both “hands free” and “eyes free” meaning you would not have to take your hands off the wheel and you would not have to take your eyes off the road in order to fully operate CarPlay. Well, to date CarPlay has a long, long way to go to be “hands free” and it isn’t even in the continent (let alone in the ballpark) of being “eyes free”.

      Apple should get CarPlay to where it was originally promised before they consider shipping Apple branded cars!

    2. I wonder if CarPlay was the Motorola Rokr of the automotive space.

      To your other point, I think you’ve nailed it. Apple talks with parts suppliers and contractors when Apple is getting ready to go from the studio to manufacturing. They know what they want to build, they may even have a hardware specification.

  3. I would buy an Apple car if it ran on gasoline. I don’t want a windmill or solar powered car run by my electric monopoly utility. I might want to drive at night or recharge my car at night. Or when there is no wind.

      1. That is good. The intended market for electric cars is people with more money than brains. Most Tesla owners have a Jeep in their other garage stall, for when they need a real car.

    1. Well considering much of the world is banning ICE cars by 2030 or soon thereafter and many major manufacturers are to stop making them at various times between 2023 and 2030 I wish you luck. It will be like sticking with the horse and cart as the more enlightened move on while the real potential for future automotive developments and efficiency relies on electric power. Most people by 2040 will laugh at the idea we drove around in such archaic technology with complex unreliable operating systems, mediocre acceleration, reliability issues and belching out noxious fumes, it will be like lusting these days after the wonderful world of double declutching, carburettor fed side valve motors or having a preference for gas fridges. And driving ‘vintage’ cars will be fascinating for many like steam trains they will even do it as a hobby on petrolhead weekends and track days but in all honesty that’s where they deserve to be.

      1. Actually I am a little surprised about Apple’s supposed interest in hybrid technology as even these as we know them anyway, have a somewhat limited future. I wonder if it relates to something a little different with a far longer term potential future, hydrogen perhaps as this finally seems to be getting traction with Govt support around the world especially due to its potential in aviation, and some interesting more practical means of hydrogen production gaining interest as a result.

      2. Well the world is essentially banning travel and heating and AC and cruise ships and military ship and jet planes and rail transportation. Wind and solar are fake energy sources and REQUIRE gas/coal/nuclear as “back up” when the sun is not shining or the wind blowing. Politicians have solid experience exploring new frontiers in stupidity and convincing stupid voters of their brilliance. California is now one of the world’s largest “importers” of electricity since it is no longer capable of meeting its own needs with its Stone Age energy pipe dreams.

        1. Angry/frustrated much Kent? Welcome to progress in the face off stubborn ignorance… If I remember rightly(?) Apple is getting close to 100% renewable energy sources for its operations – at least the Apple Park is atm. And the price of Wind and Solar is now the cheapest from of Electricity generation (with the cost per watt dropping dramatically over the last 10 years alone) – but then again none of us really know right?!

            1. Not unless you live in one of the 18 states that still used coal as their primary source of electricity in 2017—a list that included mostly rural states where coal is mined. That was down by 10 states since 2007, and has probably fallen more since. Even if you do live in West Virginia or Wyoming, power generation for a Tesla at a coal plant generates less emissions than an internal combustion engine in the vehicle.

            2. TXUSER – As I said, California imports most of its electricity because it implemented policies to close down coal, natural gas and nuclear plants, which all make reliable cost effective power. California also mandated high percentages of “renewable” (aka, unreliable, expensive and government subsidized power) so it has about the most expensive power in the country. All the states that are closing carbon based power and which also reject cost effective and carbon free nuclear have right costs and must import power. California cannot specify “renewable power” when its noon and it doesn’t have enough to power the state so it takes what the grid has available. So, the entire list of states with mostly “renewable” power are lying because at night and when the wind is not blowing they purchase coal or natural gas electric, which along with nuclear comprises 70% of the electric power in the US. All electric services are still mostly served by coal and natural gas which are the cheapest and most reliable sources. California buys tons of this power from the states which did not stupidly close good, cost effective power plants.

        2. My biggest complains about electric cars is they are just as much (and likely more) polluting than gasoline. Mining the materials for the batteries is very bad on the environment (mining for oil is as well I know) as is disposing of the batteries. I wish companies would first focus on #1 finding ways batteries can be reused indefinitely and putting a program in place so they are not thrown away and #2 finding different materials and methods of mining/obtaining those materials that is much less harsh on the environment.

  4. I am still convinced that Apple will never sell a car! That being said I still think they will build a car, but the business plan will be car as a service. With the long term goal of hitting that little car icon on your phone and your car magically arrives moments later.

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