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Apple Plans to Launch its Car in 2026 for Under $100,000

By 2026, Apple anticipates introducing a consumer-focused vehicle under the Apple brand. In order to appeal to a broader variety of consumers, Apple wants to price the vehicle under $100,000.

Apple originally intended to create a vehicle with no steering wheel or pedals that would resemble Canoo’s Lifestyle Vehicle, allowing passengers to sit face-to-face. However, the concept has been scaled back. With a driver’s seat, steering wheel, and pedals, the car will now have a more conventional design. While fully autonomous driving won’t be possible, the vehicle will be able to operate in a self-driving mode on roads.

According to sources, “In a significant shift for the project, the company is now planning a less-ambitious design that will include a steering wheel and pedals and only support full autonomous capabilities on highways, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.”

Apple might nevertheless make an effort to include certain entertainment features when possible.

“Apple currently plans to develop a vehicle that lets drivers conduct other tasks — say, watch a movie or play a game — on a freeway and be alerted with ample time to switch over to manual control if they reach city streets or encounter inclement weather. The company has discussed launching the feature in North America initially and then improving and expanding it over time.”

The Apple car’s chip is anticipated to be made of Apple silicon and “equal to about four of Apple’s highest-end Mac chips combined.”

“The heart of Apple’s technology is a powerful onboard computer system — codenamed Denali after the tallest mountain peak in North America — and a custom array of sensors. The processor’s performance is equal to about four of Apple’s highest-end Mac chips combined and is being developed by the company’s silicon engineering group. The chip has reached an advanced state and is considered nearly production-ready, though Apple may scale it down before the car’s launch to lower costs.”

Apple has yet to settle on a design for its first car, and the team is still in the “pre-prototype” stage of development. Apple is believed to have switched from an interior that was more “limousine-like” with passengers facing each other to a normal layout along with the shift from an autonomous focus to a driver-led design.

Apple is still looking for a partner to help it manufacture its car. To date, it has only engaged in meaningful discussions with Volkswagen, although those discussions took place several years ago. The project is being worked on by several experts from the motor sector at the company.

“The company is aiming to ready the design by next year and have the features set by the end of 2024. It then plans to put the car through extensive testing in 2025.”

Tesla, the EV company with partially self-driving vehicles is likely to be Apple’s main rival. The starting price of a Tesla vehicle is about $47,000, but they may cost well over $100,000. If the starting price of the Apple Car is at or around $100,000, it will go up against Tesla’s most expensive Model S.

The Apple Car was originally expected to cost more than $120,000, but Apple is now aiming for a lower price point, probably as a result of the first version’s limited autonomous driving capabilities. Apple is expecting to have a design for the Apple Car set by 2023 and a list of features ready to launch by 2024.

Testing will start in 2025, with a launch scheduled for 2026.

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