Reports in the recent past say that the American consumer electronics giant Apple Inc. is working on a new electric car. The company has been testing a Dodge Grand Caravan in California which was speculated to be nothing but a project for new mapping service that would rival Google Street View. Latest reports suggest that the said car could be the test bed for the upcoming vehicle from Apple.
According to the report, the Cupertino based company is working on an a new project, code-named ‘Titan’, which involves the design of a minivan-like vehicle. The report reveals many details about the Titan project, like hundreds of employees are working on the design of such a vehicle. A number of executives have flown to Austria to meet contract manufacturers including Magna Steyr unit of Magna International Inc., a Canadian auto supplier. Also, the company has hired several highly-experienced employees from Automotive sector, like Marc Newson, a famous industrial designer, who also created a concept car (Ford 021C) for Ford, for instance. The company has also hired Johann Jungwirth, former President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Research and Development North America.
According to the report, Apple CEO Tim Cook, approved the car project almost a year ago and assigned Steve Zadesky (Vice President, Product Design) to lead the group formed for the project. Zadesky is a former Ford engineer and has helped teams create the Apple iPod and the Apple iPhone. He has been permitted to form a 1,000-person team and poach employees from different parts of the company, adds the report.
Manufacturing a car is an expensive affair, but that shouldn’t trouble the company which has US$178 billion in cash (as of Dec. 2014), at least not for contract manufacturing.
[Source: Wall Street Journal]