Apple’s efforts to develop and eventually release a self-driving car have been in headlines in for years, and it doesn’t appear as though those plans have stalled out. To the contrary, it’s reported that Apple has hired Luigi Taraborrelli, a former high-level manager at Lamborghini with 20 years of experience at the exotic automaker, to help design its autonomous vehicle.
Citing unnamed source with apparent knowledge of the situation, Bloomberg says this is a sign that Apple is ramping up its effort to design and release a self-driving car.
Hiring Taraborrelli to help lead the team makes a lot of sense. His extensive experience at Lamborghini not only brings some cachet to the project at Apple, but it also gives the firm another high-level manager help bring this project to fruition.
To that end, Taraborrelli had a hand in designing several Lamborghini models, including the Urus, Huracan, Huracan Sterrato (an off-road vehicle), and Aventador. He also worked on Lamborghini’s Asterion concept.
Apple’s team (past and present) includes a whole bunch of engineers with experience at other automakers, such as Aston Martin, BMW, Ford, McLaren, Porsche, Rivian Automotive, Volvo, Tesla, and Waymo (owned by Google’s parent company Alphabet).
Last November, it was said that Apple might be ready to roll a self-driving car off the lot in 2025. It sounds like that is still the plan, according to the latest report. Apple is evidently also toying with the idea of releasing a model without a steering wheel or pedals, though a fully autonomous vehicle with no user controls might be a bit too ambitious, at least in the near future.
Either way, it’s a bold play for Apple, which is mostly entrenched in the mobile category (Apple Watch, iPhone, iPad, and MacBook). However, the market for self-driving cars is expected to grow from just under 24 million units this year to 65 million units by 2030.
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