Apple Speeding Up Car Development, Focusing On Self-Driving – Report

Apple iCar ProMax
Rendering, source: Kleber Silva

Apple is planning to introduce its first car by 2025, which will reportedly be a fully autonomous electric vehicle

US Technology giant Apple Inc. has decided to accelerate the development of its upcoming electric car, as per a Bloomberg report. The vehicle will reportedly feature self-driving capabilities, following the same trend as major global car manufacturers like Tesla, BMW, etc.

As per the report, the company had initially explored two ways of going about the development of the self-driving car. The first path was to build a car with limited self-driving capabilities, focused on steering and acceleration. This sounds like adaptive cruise control and lane change/keep assists, perhaps with improved or added functionality over the current-gen systems.

The other one was to build a fully autonomous car that doesn’t require human intervention. This could perhaps be a level 5 fully autonomous system, which doesn’t require any driver input, or a level 4 system, which requires no input under certain situations. Although the company was exploring both possibilities, it has now decided to focus on the latter.

Apple Car interior

Apple is planning to debut its car in four years, targeting a launch window of 2025. The deadline is a little too optimistic, especially considering how ambitious the project is. Fully autonomous cars have been in development for years now, and Tesla is perhaps the closest to realising it, but it’s still a few years away.

Apple is reportedly planning to build a car without steering wheels and pedals, for a completely hands-off driving experience. The vehicle could feature a lounge-like cabin, with a large touchscreen infotainment system in the middle of the car for all passengers to interact with while being driven around. For safety, there will be an emergency takeover driving mode, allowing an occupant to take control of the car.

The report also states that Apple recently crossed a key milestone in developing its upcoming car’s autonomous system. The company has been working on a new processor for its first-generation car, designed by Apple’s silicon engineering group, and the development has been mostly completed. This also includes work on the autonomous driving software that runs on said chips.