Apple ends its ten-year endeavor to develop electric cars

According to people with knowledge of the situation, Apple is giving up on one of the most ambitious projects in the company’s history—building an electric car—after a ten-year endeavor. The almost 2,000 workers on the project were taken aback when it revealed the information internally on February 27, according to the people. Chief operating officer Jeff Williams and Mr. Kevin Lynch, the vice-president overseeing the project, discussed the choice. The two informed the workers that the project will start to wind down and that many workers in the automobile team, which is called the Special Projects Group, or SPG, will be moved to the executive John Giannandrea’s artificial intelligence (AI) division.

 

Several hundred hardware engineers and vehicle designers make up the automotive crew as well. They might be able to apply for positions with other Apple teams. There will be layoffs, though it’s not known how many. Investors were relieved by the move, and on February 27, after Bloomberg broke the story, Apple shares rose. At the New York close, the stock had gained around 1% to close at US$182.63. The CEO of Tesla, Mr. Elon Musk, praised the action as well. He posted an image of a cigarette and a saluting emoji on the social networking platform X.

 

About 2014, the tech giant began developing an automobile, aiming for a completely autonomous electric vehicle (EV) with voice-guided navigation and an interior akin to a limousine. However, the project was never easy to work on, and Apple had to make multiple changes to the team’s strategy and leadership. Beyond just how the car looked, one of the biggest challenges was developing self-driving technology. Since 2017, Apple has used a Lexus sport utility vehicle’s exterior to road test its technology, putting dozens of cars on US roads. More covert parts were also tested on an enormous track in Phoenix, Arizona, which was formerly owned by Chrysler.

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