VW Claims Apple Won't Have an Easy Ride in the Car Industry

<p class="heading_excerpt">VW chief isn't afraid of Project Titan despite Apple's track record of upending the industries it decides to compete in.</p>

        Herbert Diess, the chief executive of Volkswagen Group, has downplayed any potential impact of an Apple Car on the automobile industry, saying VW is "not afraid" of Project Titan.

                VW "Not Afraid" of an Apple Car

        Although Diess acknowledges that an Apple-branded automobile may indeed make sense, he doesn't think Apple could dominate the car-making landscape "overnight" due to intense competition. Cutting steel and selling cars to finicky consumers is a tough business to be in, he hinted, adding this isn't a field any one company can just "take over at a single stroke."

        Reuters realys what Diess told Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung in an interview:

        The car industry is not a typical tech-sector that you could take over at a single stroke. Apple will not manage that overnight. Still, we are not afraid.

        Still, an Apple-branded vehicle would make sense given Apple's competencies in batteries, software, industrial denews24nation, and its seemingly endless resources, the executive added. Apple does not offer any car-related products aside from the CarPlay dashboard software that lets a car radio or head unit act as a display and a controller for an iPhone.

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        Plans for Project Titan (the internal code-name for an Apple Car) are not public despite a flurry of recent rumors saying Apple was looking to partner up with Hyundai/Kia.

        Apple is said to have talked to other automobile companies and contract manufacturers---including Magna, Nissan, and Foxconn---about building its autonomously-driven vehicle. Sources say an Apple Car may lack a steering wheel because it may initially focus on food delivery and robotaxi operations before being sold to consumers.

        Related: The Best Apple CarPlay Apps for iPhone

        The biggest takeaway from Herbert's comment would be that the automobile industry has been paying close attention to Project Titan. Clearly, the very thought of Apple entering this sector is making some of the top executives nervous. That said, history is full of people who should have known better than ridicule Apple for entering a new product category.

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        The best example of that is former Palm CEO Ed Colligan. Just weeks ahead of the original iPhone introduction back in 2007, Colligan laughed off the idea that a company known for denews24nationing pretty computers could win customers in the competitive smartphone sector.

        We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone. PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in.

        Similar to how Colligan described Apple as "PC guys," the Volkswagen boss is trying to downplay the notion that a technology company could win customers in the car-making business. History will show whether Herbert's comment will age better than Cooligan's.

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About The Author

        Christian Zibreg
                                (62 Articles Published)

            Writing words that feed news cycles around the world. I help keep Apple blogs rolling and the Internet safe. No mouse buttons were harmed during my writing.

                From Christian Zibreg

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