Apple is delaying its long-rumored self-driving car until 2026 and shifting its futuristic design to include a steering wheel and driver's seat, report says

An Apple store in Sydney, Australia
Some Apple workers in Australia went on strike on Tuesday.Loren Elliott/Reuters
  • Apple is scaling back plans for a fully autonomous vehicle.

  • The new model will now be unveiled a year later than expected.

  • Apple aims to sell the vehicle for less than $100,000.

The dream was to build a fully autonomous vehicle that needed neither steering wheels nor pedals. Apple's Titan — in theory — would have allowed its riders to coast through city streets sitting like passengers in a limousine. There would have been large touchscreen iPads anchored in the middle of the vehicle for on-board entertainment.

The vehicle's autonomous capabilities would have surpassed those of seasoned automakers like Tesla and Waymo.

Now, Apple is putting its plans on pause and scaling back its ambitious vision for a fully autonomous future. Apple will instead be debuting a vehicle — steering wheels, pedals and all — that will only be autonomous on highways, according to Bloomberg, which cited people familiar with the matter.

The model will be unveiled in 2026 — a year later than planned — and will be sold for less than $100,000, Bloomberg reported. The price point of the car — the Titan, as its known internally — was initially set at around $120,000, which would have placed it in the ranks of sports cars like Porsche and luxury vehicles like Mercedes.

The car's core technology is an onboard computer system known as the Denali which has a processing performance that's equal 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 gauge 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 the features finalized by 2024. Over the course of 2025, the car will go through rigorous testing, according to Bloomberg.

Over the past decade, Apple has kept its self-driving car project under wraps. The company has been spending approximately $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.

 

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