Now it’s not a wonder why Apple has been dragging its feet on the Apple Car. You have to imagine that Elon Musk probably has more insight into what’s going on at Apple, than most of us do. It only makes sense that Apple would have the inside scoop on Tesla as well. They practically “share” employees!
Apple had Tesla vehicles at its Project Titan headquarters, just a few moths back. There’s nothing to say that those weren’t vehicles with early Level 5 autonomous hardware. It’s obvious that Tesla has been at this for quite some time.
We all expected full self-driving to come soon enough. But the talk has always referenced 2020 (the year of the Apple Car). Other substantial automakers like Mercedes and Volvo have included 2025 in some reports. That’s almost 9 years away. Unlike Apple, Tesla hasn’t made a career of keeping secrets, but this was a pretty big one. Now we have to stay on the edge of our seats and wonder what Elon Musk may have up his sleeve next. Just recently the 100 kWh battery was “discovered”… another huge Tesla secret.
Tesla is putting the Level 5 autonomous hardware in all new production cars, to keep cars from becoming obsolete. This is the same concept as the larger capacity battery packs. It’s truly crazy to think that any auto company would put expensive features in cars, in hopes that people may end up using them. Unless, of course, like traditional automakers, it is built into the cost. Even crazier is to think that the self-driving hardware would be put in all cars, with the hope that regulators will soon allow for the tech.
Elon Musk assured that Apple will make a car, but made it clear that it was already a “missed opportunity”. Now it is much more clear exactly what he was referring to. But, like Elon Musk, Apple is ridiculously smart. The people at Apple know as well as we do that all of Tesla’s current competition is way behind. Tesla has paved the way for the widespread adoption of EVs. Without Tesla, we wouldn’t see the trends that we are currently seeing. The same should prove true with self-driving. Tesla has let the cat out of the bag and now it’s off to the races.
No wonder Apple is focusing on self-driving hardware and software. Who needs a car at this point anyway? It’s going to be about producing something that will compete with Tesla … and soon. Since all of the other major automakers are now years behind, and none of the startups are showing anything “real” or production ready, it is Apple’s chance to jump in and save the day. Apple needs to take this opportunity to provide the “others” with what it takes to keep up with Tesla.
Just imagine … Apple has a self-driving system just about ready, that will be available to interested automakers, prior to mass production of the Model 3, and prior to the time that regulators give the official approval to Level 5 autonomy. It’s going to get very exciting seeing everything pan out.