Hyundai building the first Apple Car? It could happen soon.
Hype around the first ‘Apple Car’ — a fully-electric, self-driving model — gained steam again in recent weeks as the tech giant aimed to launch a production model in 2024. Now, more details have emerged regarding a potential partnership with Hyundai to actually build the first units. Korea IT News, by way of Reuters, first reported the tie-up, which aims to stick to a 2024 launch date for the United States.
Last week, a Hyundai spokesperson confirmed the company was in talks with Apple to build 100,000 vehicles in 2024. From there, the joint venture would ramp up production to 400,000 annual units. For its part, Apple is aggressively expanding its team to bring an actual car to life in the coming years. Today’s report notes a concept could see the light of day as early as next year.
At this point, neither Hyundai nor Apple have officially responded to the report. However, Hyundai is working on its own E-GMP platform to underpin its next-generation electric cars. The joint venture could incorporate that structure into an Apple Car, but at this point we don’t know exactly how such a tie-up would play out. Apple could bring its own designs and technologies to the table, while Hyundai would naturally bring the manufacturing muscle. Exactly how much “Hyundai” and how much “Apple” this car will be is an unknown quantity at this point.
The report says the joint venture could build the Apple Car at Kia’s West Point, Georgia manufacturing plant. Failing that, the two firms may also both invest in a new plant altogether. Whatever the case, we may hear more as the two companies reach an agreement by March 2021.