- Apple is winding down plans for a fully autonomous vehicle.
- The new model will now be unveiled a year later than expected.
- Apple intends to sell the vehicle for less than $100,000.
The dream was to build a completely autonomous vehicle that did not need steering wheels or pedals. The Apple Titan, in theory, would have allowed its passengers to travel the streets of the city sitting like passengers in a limousine. There would be large touchscreen iPads anchored in the middle of the vehicle for in-flight entertainment.
The vehicle’s autonomous capabilities would have surpassed those of experienced automakers like Tesla and Waymo.
Now, Apple is putting its plans on hold and downsizing its ambitious vision of a fully autonomous future. Instead, Apple will introduce a vehicle (steering wheels, pedals and all) that will only be autonomous on the roads, according to Bloomberg, citing people familiar with the matter.
The model will be unveiled in 2026, a year later than planned, and will sell for less than $100,000, Bloomberg reported. The price of the car, the Titan as it is known internally, was initially set at around $120,000, which would have put it in the ranks of sports cars like Porsche and luxury vehicles like Mercedes.
The car’s core technology is an on-board computing system known as the Denali, which has processing performance equivalent to “four of Apple’s highest-end Mac chips combined,” according to Bloomberg.
The computer, along with a series of sensors, will allow the car to identify driving lanes and also measure its distance from other objects.
And instead of a limousine-style interior, the car will be designed like a traditional vehicle with a driver’s seat, Bloomberg noted. Apple aims to have the design finished by 2023 and features finalized by 2024. Over the course of 2025, the car will go through rigorous testing, according to Bloomberg.
For the past decade, Apple has kept its self-driving car project secret. The company has been spending roughly $1 billion per year on the project, according to Bloomberg.
The department has about 1,000 employees who are spread across the US and Europe, according to Bloomberg.