Though plagued by setbacks and layoffs, Apple has reportedly been building a car under the “Project Titan” banner for years. Now, a new report shows the rubber might actually be hitting the road sometime soonish.
Multiple sources familiar with Apple’s automotive ambitions told Reuters that Apple could debut a car in 2024. It would be oriented toward individual drivers (not taxi fleets like Waymo), and would feature a reportedly innovative Apple battery and autonomous driving tech.
The sources said that the pandemic could push the timeline back a year to 2025, and there’s a chance Apple might license its tech to existing car manufacturers instead of building the car itself. That certainly must be what a company like Tesla would hope for, because the hype around the launch of an Apple Car would make the launch of iPhones and iPads look positively puny in comparison.
The Reuters article came one day after what MacRumors termed “sketchy reports” began circulating about the Apple Car. Those reports claimed that Apple would debut its car in the third quarter of 2021. The new 2024 timeline is in line with what frequently correct Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said in the past about a car coming between 2023 and 2025.
In February 2019, Apple confirmed it had laid off nearly 200 employees, most of whom were engineers, from Project Titan. That wasn’t a great sign for the division, but this latest report indicates Project Titan is still kicking.
Again, details are up in the air. But analysts told Reuters it’s not out of the realm of possibility for Apple to actually manufacture its own car. The company is reportedly partnering with other component makers for tech like LIDAR. With those partners, it could have the supply chain might to compete with Elon Musk and other electric and autonomous car heavy hitters.