Venerated automotive blog Jalopnik has recently expanded on the first known vehicle purchase by Apple’s car division.
This division which is believed to be known as SixtyEight Research, its shell name, is known to have purchased an odd vintage vehicle known as the 1957 Fiat Multiplia.
This vehicle has a 600 cc rear mounted engine and an intriguing VW-bus like design.
The assumption by the author is that the car is meant to serve as an inspiration to the design team. In fact it is likely sitting inside one of the buildings in Apple’s automotive R&D center for employees to scan, savor and scrutinize as they strive toward the production of Apple’s first car.
The drivetrain elements of the Apple vehicle are likely to be standard, and in fact may be borrowed from partner BMW. But Apple is all about design. The vehicle will look and feel special in every imaginable way. In fact Apple design lead Jony Ive is well known to love vehicle design and himself as well a collector of vintage models.
The Fiat Multiplia was a design breakthrough at its time. Not quite a car and not quite a van its unique shape was designed to maximize interior space.
This matches Apple’s likely goal – creating a wonderful unique and likely breakthrough interior so passengers can luxuriate in technological utopia while the car drives itself.
It is not likely the Apple Car will look exactly like this old Fiat, but very well will be unique on the road, standing out among other cars, and may appeal to people who typically do not lust for cars, thereby carving out a whole new market.