Apple electric car given launch year of 2019, ramps up research

22 Sep 2015

Sources within Apple have said that the company is shifting significant resources to the creation of an electric car, with a launch year of 2019 as its target.

Apple has spent more than a year discussing the potential for using its vast resources to build an Apple electric car, and now it has given the go-ahead for it to become a reality under the codename Project Titan.

However, rather than follow other companies in trying to produce the first commercial autonomous car, Apple will focus on creating something that could rival the already well-established brands on the market like Tesla.

According to the Wall Street Journal, as a sign of its intentions, Apple is looking to triple its existing team of 600 staff already provisionally assigned to the project.

In this matter, rather interestingly, Apple has begun hiring people with experience working in autonomous cars despite its intentions of producing a human-controlled vehicle.

First car to be manufactured by a third party?

A number of questions remain, however, particularly as to how Apple plans to actually produce the car once it enters the manufacturing stage.

Given that Apple has given the responsibility of manufacturing its hardware to third-party companies like Foxxcon, will Apple decide to break protocol and make it itself?

If it were to keep with its third-party manufacturing it would become the first car-producing company to do so and this would be likely to create issues with car manufacturing regulators.

It also remains to be seen as to how much Apple can improve on future generations of electric cars given that by the time 2019 comes around, Tesla could release a number of entry-level electric cars into the market.

As things stand, equity analyst from Piper Jaffray, Gene Muster, said he believes that Apple’s chances of creating the car are only between 50-60pc.

New York streets image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic