Apple hires 31-Year Ford veteran to accelerate ‘Apple Car’ work

Apple has hired a longtime Ford Motor Co. executive, Desi Ujkashevic, who helped lead safety efforts and vehicle engineering, a sign that Cupertino is again ramping up “Apple Car” development, Bloomberg News reports citing “people with knowledge of the matter.”

vehicle under wraps

Mark Gurman and Keith Naughton for Bloomberg News:

Ujkashevic had worked at Ford since 1991, most recently serving as its global director of automotive safety engineering. Before that, she helped oversee engineering of interiors, exteriors, chassis and electrical components for many Ford models.

The executive worked on Ford’s Escape, Explorer, Fiesta and Focus models, as well as the Lincoln MKC and Aviator, according to her LinkedIn profile. She also helped develop new electric vehicles for the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker. And Ujkashevic has experience dealing with regulatory issues, something that will be key to Apple getting a car on the road.

Enlisting Ujkashevic suggests that Apple is continuing to push toward a self-driving car despite several high-profile departures over the past year. The project’s management team has been almost entirely replaced since it was run by Doug Field, an executive who left for Ford last year… After Field quit, the company appointed Apple Watch and health software head Kevin Lynch to oversee the project. Lynch is a well-regarded software engineering manager but hasn’t previously led the development of a vehicle. Still, the company has sought to accelerate the project under Lynch — with the goal of announcing a product by 2025.

An Apple car would put the company in competition with Tesla Inc. and Lucid Group Inc., as well as traditional automakers racing to introduce electric vehicles. Ford has been particularly aggressive in EVs lately with a push to electrify the best-selling vehicle in America: the F-150 pickup.

MacDailyNews Take: 🎶 On the road again… 🎶

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  1. A woman to lead the brilliant secret plan to make a coal and carbon pored car with no gas pedal and no steering wheel to reach all those consumers who want such a thing.

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