Apple is close to concluding a deal with the Korean company Hyundai-Kia to manufacture an electric autonomous car bearing the Apple brand, after years of speculation that it will eventually enter the auto industry with its own car.
The car dubbed the Apple Car, which is being developed by a team at Apple and will be assembled at Kia’s assembly plant in Georgia, is tentatively slated to start in 2024, although people familiar with the talks between Apple and Hyundai -Kia “They say its final offering may be postponed.
Sources told CNBC that no agreement had been reached between the two companies, and confirmed that Apple might eventually decide to launch a partnership with another car maker separately or in addition to working with Hyundai.
“I doubt Hyundai-Kia is the only car maker they can do a deal with, and there might be another party,” says one of the sources familiar with the company’s strategy.
And if the agreement is completed, the important question is what is the interest of the two companies in concluding this deal? Insiders say that each company sees a unique benefit in working with the other to develop the new vehicle.
For Apple, the decision to manufacture the car opens up the potential to tap into a $ 10 trillion global auto market.
Morgan Stanley analyst Katie Huberty outlined Apple’s profit potential in a research note in January.
Apple owns about a third of the smartphone market estimated at $ 500 billion annually, and the company only needs a 2% share of the auto market to get income the size of the iPhone, which is Apple’s best-selling product.