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Apple Could Have a Car in the Works

February 12, 2015

By now, almost everyone is aware that Google is working on a self-driving car. Many people have seen the cute prototype that seats two and is without a steering wheel. What people may be surprised to learn is that another tech giant may be building its own vehicle. According to some reports, Apple has a vehicle project of its own.

Apple has not announced anything related to vehicle development and is unlikely to make such announcement in the near future. What is fueling rumors of an Apple car in development are the happenings in Silicon Valley, specifically those employee-related. In a Bloomberg report last week, Tesla Motors Inc. CEO Elon Musk claimed that Apple has been attempting to poach Tesla employees, luring the electric carmaker’s talents with $250,000 signing bonuses as well as 60 percent pay increases. Musk said that the iPhone maker has only succeeded in poaching a few people.

The poaching of Tesla employees alone does not prove that Apple is actually working on a car. It just proves how determined the company is to get the best talent. As the report pointed out, Tesla also hires top talent away from Apple—it has recruited about 150 employees from the tech company. What suggests that an Apple car is in the works is the kind of people Apple is hiring away from Tesla. The Mac Observer reported early this week that Apple is hiring people whose expertise has something to do with cars. A BusinessInsider article specified that the engineers poached from Tesla have know-how in fields such as manufacturing and mechanics.

In the same BusinessInsider article, an Apple employee was quoted to have said that the company is working on an exciting project that will “give Tesla a run for its money.” Meanwhile, The Mac Observer’s source said that there is an 80 percent chance that Apple is working on an actual vehicle. Whether the vehicle is electric-powered or a self-driving one is unknown.

Nothing is confirmed for now, but it may be safe to say that Apple is working on something car-related. It is possible that the company is just developing car technology like its CarPlay, or making improvements on existing ones. Maybe Apple wants to go beyond infotainment systems and also offer over-the-air updates like Tesla does. Whatever it is Apple is working on right now, it seems like the public would need to wait a while to find out what it is.

Photo credit: Marco Paköeningrat/ Flickr/ CC BY-SA

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