Apple is working on the Apple Car, as most of you have probably heard. With Google, Volkswagen, Toyota, Tesla and many others working on their own revolutionary automobiles, Apple found that it would be a feasible endeavor to get in on the bandwagon towards self-driving, autonomous electric cars. The company already has a few thousand employees working on the Apple Car, new engineers from Tesla and GM, team managers, and test sites bought up from military forces. It seems as though the Apple Car is ready to go from concept or project to prototype, seeing as test sites and government discussion meetings are already on the way. Apple discussing specifics about the Apple Car and its compliance with legislation certainly suggests the Cupertino-based company is further along the development process as initially believed.
The Apple Car release date is pegged for 2018, in just two years, as rumors about a possible shipping date emerge. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Apple Car shipping date is set for 2019, which leaves room for only two more years of development. If these rumors are true, consumer variants of the Apple Car will be available by 2019 and will start roaming the streets of the world. However, the report points out that the first Apple Car to be released will not be the self-driving, fully autonomous vehicle that everyone is expecting, rather it will be a semi-autonomous vehicle with street smarts and Apple integration.
It seems as though the Apple Car won’t just be a single car, rather multiple variants of the same design. While the base, original model will most likely be a fully electric vehicle with a couple of smart features and a neat autopilot for driving on the highway, the second model will be a fully autonomous, self-driving limousine. The self-driving Apple Car is expected to start shipping in 2021 or 2020, as most reports confirm the release- and shipping dates. This model of the Apple Car will most likely feature a futuristic design like in some of the concept cars that we’ve previously seen.
By the time the Apple Car is ready for consumer, the company is expected to add numerous new software features to the dashboard of the vehicle, including integrated Siri, drop-off, music, autopilot, mapping and navigation service as well as automated everything. Since it’s going to be a fully electric vehicle, we expect it do be either hydrogen-fuel-cell variant like Toyota’s Mirai or something similar to the Tesla Model S. The project is super secret and there are few credible leads out there talking about the actual engineering process going on in the Apple HQ.
Although Tim Cook and co. have not confirmed that they’re working on a self-driving or any other type of Apple Car, most reports and rumors point to the contrary. With the Apple Car being internally dubbed as Titan and numerous meetings, relationships and projects having to do with autonomous vehicles and electric vehicles revealed by the news, all evidence points towards the company really working on a car. Although some say it might just be improvement for Apple CarPlay, the evidence is overwhelming.
With rumors about Apple working with BMW and poaching Tesla engineers, it is more than likely that the company is working on its own vehicle. Whether that vehicle will actually be released or only used for testing and further development, is not yet clear. While Apple already has a large team already assembled, partnerships with automakers already in place and a test site more or less secured, the company is still reticent in saying anything truly revealing about Titan. I guess we still have a few more years to wait until we find out the truth.