Apple has us all – consumers – in its pocket, well, we have Apple in all our pockets …you got what I mean!? Now apparently the consumer behemoth aims to have us in it on the road. The company is set to release its first car in 2019, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal’s Daisuke Wakabayashi.
Apple is referring to the idea as a “committed project” internally, the WSJ report says. According to sources the company plans on tripling the number of folk working on the project.
The initiative, being called Project Titan, so far consists of 600 people.
Although many reports have suggested that Apple is working on a self-driving car, the company’s first vehicle is more likely to not be fully autonomous Wakabayashi wrote, citing sources familiar with the project.
A quick trawl through LinkdIn also dragged a surprise, Apple has headed hunted a senior Tesla exec ::::
While Apple is said to be readying itself for a 2019 launch, it’s possible we’ll have to wait a little longer. As the report notes, building a car from scratch is complex, and those familiar with Apple’s plans were sceptical that the company would be able to hit that deadline.
The report comes after Apple had met with officials from California’s Department of Motor Vehicles to discuss the state’s autonomous vehicle regulations. The Guardian reported in August that Apple had begun seeking facilities for testing autonomous vehicles.
WSJ first reported that Apple had planned to develop its own electric car in February. Since then the company has made high-profile hires, including Fiat Chrysler’s Doug Betts and autonomous-vehicle researcher Paul Furgale.
In February, an Apple employee sent an email to Business Insider saying that Apple was working on a project that would “give Tesla a run for its money.”
Asked last week by late-night talk-show host Stephen Colbert about Apple’s interest in a driverless car, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said: “We look at a number of things along the way, and we decide to really put our energies in a few of them.” No one at Apple will comment on whether Apple is making a car.
The current bluster over an Apple’s Project Titan has caused such excitement, its almost irrelevant if the car project ever leads to an actual automobile, they already have a profound effect on the actual vehicle manufacturing industry, the buzz is on!
The simple knowledge that Apple has a substantial – and fast growing – team of specialised people working on car designs changed the conversation last week at the Frankfurt International Motor Show. Apple and Google were the talk of the show even though neither had a presence at the event.
Daimler chief executive, Dieter Zetsche, said in no uncertain terms that his company had no “plan to become the Foxconn of Apple.”
Tesla Talent Onboard
Last month Apple head-hunted a senior engineer away from Tesla, adding to the considerable stable of engineering and management talent in Apple’s car project. Mr. Jamie Carlson joins several others at Apple with expertise in self-driving technology. Jamie Carlson’s LinkedIn profile reveals that he has left Tesla and moved to Apple recently.
It’s fairly certain now, based on leaks, sources, and hiring that Apple has a special project, code named “Titan” devoted to car technology, but Apple has made no announcement. Speculation to date is uncertain about whether Apple is developing the technology for other companies or whether it intends to build and market its own branded electric car. However, most evidence to date suggests that Apple will build its own electric car, targeted for release in 2020. Whether it will be self-driving at launch remains uncertain.
Other notable hires this year by Apple who have experience with autonomous vehicles.
- Megan McClain, Volkswagen engineer.
- Vinay Palakkode, Carnegie Mellon University.
- Paul Furgale, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.
This is clearly not a complete list, others with relative expertise have been dragged onboard ove the past 18 months, including executives with experience in heavy (ish) manufacturing; including battery technology.
Some analysts have suggested that Apple simply acquire Tesla, the most direct route to making an automobile. The downside on this theory is that Apples history suggests it absorbs cultures that are more easily digested, Tesla has managed to create its own, very distinctive culture with a different vision, though the theory shouldn’t be written off just yet.
Ünrelated! Überelektrisch! Porsche Presents… Mission E
The 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show hasn’t even kicked off yet, but already there’s a contender for best in show. Porsche’s reveal of its stunning Mission E Concept is a show stopping, drop dead gorgeous, über-fast-charging, all-electric supercar that Porsche reckons will clock the Nürburgring in under 8 minutes, and while it might scream around the 20 odd kilometres of the Nordschleife, what this vehicle shows us very quietly is the future shape of automotive form and function.
Mission E concept is by far the cleanest design to hit the podium to date, very Porsche, but also very predictive of shapes to come. Loaded with plus numbers, 800 volt, 440kW-600hp, 0-100kmh in 3.5 seconds, a top speed of 250kmh and a range of 500km …and perhaps a cheeky nudging at the only other cool spark on the block ‘Lookout Tesla’ :: Read the full article »»»»
RELATED! Google Robot Drivers are Coming, South Australia Plans on Being First
Former General Motors executive and adviser to Google’s driverless car project Larry Burns visited Adelaide last year to speak with government and business interests about the project’s progress.
In a speech delivered in the South Australian Parliament today to mark the formal opening of the new session, the Government outlined a plan to reform two pieces of road legislation :: Read the full article »»»»
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