Apple [NSDQ:AAPL] may go it alone on development and production of its oft-rumored car project, Korea's Maeil newspaper reported last week.
The economic daily reported that Apple had looked to form a partnership with an established automaker but talks with several companies, including BMW Group, Hyundai Motor Group, Nissan and Toyota, went nowhere.
According to sources, Apple is currently requesting information on parts from suppliers and building up its own R&D resources. Apple in June hired Ulrich Kranz, an automotive industry veteran who in previous roles headed BMW i and served as chief technology officer at electric-vehicle startups Faraday Future and Canoo.
However, the company earlier in September lost its car project head, Doug Field, to Ford. According to Bloomberg, he was replaced by Kevin Lynch, an Adobe veteran who joined Apple in 2013 to work on software for smartwatches and wearable health devices.
Apple remains quiet on plans related to the car project, often referred to as Project Titan. The company has been filing multiple patents in recent years related to cars and driving, and in April it was reported to be in talks with a joint venture between LG and Magna International about sourcing EV powertrain components.
Apple is thought to be readying its car for a reveal in 2024, though production isn't likely to start until the following year at the earliest. The car may not be something sold directly to the public, however. In February, a report claimed the car will be a self-driving vehicle designed for “last mile” trips, suggesting it will be some sort of autonomous shuttle or delivery van.
Apple isn't the only tech company looking to get into the car business. Alphabet is in the process of expanding its Waymo self-driving taxi service to more cities, and Chinese rival to Alphabet Baidu is also offering self-driving taxi services over in China. Fellow Chinese tech firms Huawei and Xioami are also looking to launch cars and self-driving services.