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Apple to launch its autonomous car by 2025: All you need to know

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Image credits: noelsch / Pixabay

In 2014, Apple began to work on one of its ambitious projects, ‘Project Titan,’ with thousand of car engineers and experts, developing an Electric Vehicle. A lot happened later, including a rumor suggesting Apple shelved its plan around 2016, but now it’s back on track. 

As per the latest reports, the Cupertino tech giant Apple is working on a fully autonomous self-driving vehicle with no steering or pedals. Currently, John Glannandrea, chief of Apple’s AI and machine learning, is heading the car project along with Kevin Lynch, known for his work on Apple Watch. 

In 2017, Apple CEO Tim Cook said, “We’re focusing on autonomous systems. It’s a core technology that we view as very important. We sort of see it as the mother of all AI projects. It’s probably one of the most difficult AI projects actually to work on.” 

Apple Car will have a better AI integration and is likely to be sold significantly higher than a standard electric vehicle. 

Apple is planning to launch its car by 2025 but given the features and other outside complexities, like chip shortages, there are possibilities that it might get delayed. 

Let’s have a quick look at some of the possible leaks that we know till now. 

Design & Chassis

Apple is planning to design a car without any steering wheels or pedals. According to Bloomberg, the Apple car will feature an interior similar to Lifestyle Vehicle from Canoo Inc. In that, passengers sit along the sides facing each other just like a limousine.

According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple car’s chassis could be based on Hyundai’s E-GMP electric vehicle (BEV) platform. However, there is no information on Apple inking a partnership with Hyundai so far. 

Most advanced chip ever

The Apple car will feature a chip with the most advanced components. Apple’s silicon engineering group, which also created the processors for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, designed the chip, claims Bloomberg. The company plans to use the new processor design and updated self-driving sensors in retrofitted cars that spent years testing in California.

According to the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles, Apple has a fleet of 69 Lexus SUVs experimenting with its technology. 

Apple car chip is made up of neural processors that can handle the artificial intelligence needed for autonomous driving. However, it requires a cooling system since there are chances it might get hot during the action. 

Safety aspects

Safety is yet another crucial aspect when it comes to designing a vehicle. The Cupertino tech giant is aiming to create a safer vehicle than Tesla or Waymo. As a result, the engineers are building plenty of redundancy and backup systems that will kick in to avoid driving system failures.

Battery systems

In terms of battery, Apple could use the Combined Charging System (CCS), a standard used for charging electric vehicles when it comes to powering up the car. Various companies like Tesla, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Kia, Hyundai, and others have adopted CCS. 

The company is also working on a new battery design that has the potential to reduce the cost of the battery and increase the vehicle range.  

“Apple is creating a “mono cell” design that will bulk up the individual battery cells and free up space inside the battery pack by removing pouches and modules that hold battery materials, says another report. 

Partnerships

According to various rumors, Apple has entered into a partnership with a well-known automative electronics supplier for components. Further, the company is said to be working on establishing a base in the US. 

According to Mark Gurman, Apple is struggling to find an ideal partner to build the vehicle, and automakers are said to be concerned about the implications of such an agreement on their brand.

Consequently, the company is reportedly looking into contract manufacturers such as Foxconn, which has an existing relationship with the company. 

Magna, the contract manufacturer is rumored to be another possibility, but who knows, Apple may also choose to manufacture the vehicle itself, says Macrumors. 

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