According to a report by CNBC, Apple is close to finalizing a deal with Hyundai Motor Group and Kia to manufacture an Apple-branded autonomous electric vehicle at Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia in West Point.
The fully autonomous “Apple Car” is being developed by a team at Apple and is tentatively scheduled for production in 2024, though that roll-out could be pushed back. However, no official statement has been released by either company, so any potential deal is just that — potential.
Hyundai announced in December the Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), which will be used as a base for any electric vehicle Hyundai or Kia decides to build in the future. The platform has been engineered to provide a range of more than 500km (approximately 310 miles) on a full charge and be charged up to 80% within 18 minutes through high-speed charging.
“Today our front-wheel driven Hyundai and Kia BEVs are already among the most efficient ones in their segments,” said Albert Biermann, president and head of R&D Division for Hyundai Motor Group at the time of the E-GMP announcement. “With our rear-wheel driven based E-GMP, we are extending our technological leadership into segments where customers demand excellent driving dynamics and outstanding efficiency.”
Hyundai and Kia plan to have 23 global electric models by 2025.
While the Apple-Hyundai deal is reportedly close to completion, there is still a chance that Apple could change its mind and go with another automaker or delay revealing its Apple Car until sometime in the future.