A few days back there were reports that Apple was secretly working on a new car. We now have Bloomberg revealing that the Cupertino giant is indeed working on an electric car which could enter production as early as 2020. This is quite fast considering that auto companies normally take 5 to 7 years to develop a car.
Apple’s electric car could pose a threat to Tesla and General Motors, both of which are planning to unveil their respective new electric car models that can cover over 200 miles on a single charge and they would cost less than $40,000.
As Steve LeVine, author of the book “The powerhouse” told Bloomberg TV, “That’s the inflection point — the proving ground — that brings on the electric age. Now you have Apple coming in and this is critical mass. Was GM really going to be able to match Tesla? Apple can.”
With a record $18 billion profit during the previous quarter and holding a whopping $178 billion cash, Apple is currently in a very strong financial position to easily spend money to build a car speedily if it so desires. Apple CEO Tim Cook is reportedly keen for the company to pursue new lines of products.
According to a source, Tesla’s success has shown that overcoming the traditional barriers to enter the automotive industry are not as difficult as thought earlier. Several companies are now investing to bring technological developments in automobiles.
Apple already has about 200 employees in its car team, the company has been hiring many techies expert in batteries, robotics and other fields related to car manufacturing, in the past couple of months. Apple has poached about 50 people from Tesla and recently a battery maker A123 Systems has filed a lawsuit against Apple for “aggressive campaign to poach” its employees.
Apple has been known to scrap some of its secret projects so it may very well scrap its car project or delay it if the progress is not satisfactory. Tim Cook himself had said back in 2014 that although Apple has several projects in development which are not in public knowledge, the company may not release them all. So there is no guarantee that Apple’s electric car will arrive in the market by 2020.
There is no official word from the company itself about the project.