Volkswagen CEO is 'looking forward' to Apple's upcoming self-driving car

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Volkswagon's CEO, Herbert Diess, posted on LinkedIn that he welcomes Apple's Project Titan as a competitor in the autonomous car market.




On Monday, it was reported that Apple could release its own autonomous car by 2024. The so-called "Apple Car" could feature "next level" battery technology, that could cut battery costs and increase the vehicles range.

In a LinkedIn comment thread spotted by iMore, Diess replied to a student who asked for his thoughts on Apple's Project Titan.
"We look forward to new competitors who will certainly accelerate the transformation of our industry and bring in new skills. The incredible valuation [of Apple] and thus the virtually unlimited access to resources instills a lot of respect in us. A real challenge - dimensions larger than that within our industry (e.g. Toyota Motor Corporation) I have already said: The most valuable company in the world will again be a mobility company - it can be Tesla, Apple or Volkswagen AG." (translated)
Apple's potential move into the electric vehicle market is garnering some significant attention from media and anaylists alike. Investment bank Morgan Stanley said it believes Apple has the "key ingredients" that are critical for a successful entry into the car market.

The Cupertino tech giant has been developing vehicular systems since 2014. At the time, it was developing its own physical passenger vehicle. Since then, however, Project Titan has undergone restructurings, staff cuts, and a change of direction to autonomous systems.

Earlier in December, Apple was said to have moved its car division to the leadership of AI and Siri chief John Giannandrea.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    Nice photo of a BMW i3
    Scot1viclauyyc
  • Reply 2 of 26
    Who posts on LinkedIn anymore?
  • Reply 3 of 26
    red oak said:
    Who posts on LinkedIn anymore?
    What’s a LinkedIn?
  • Reply 4 of 26
    h2ph2p Posts: 309member
    daniPhone said:
    red oak said:
    Who posts on LinkedIn anymore?
    What’s a LinkedIn?
    Ah, I believe that a "LinkedIn" is a reference to an unreleased version of macOS and Vulcan Mountain Cat:
    edited December 2020
  • Reply 5 of 26
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,435member
    I'm still inclined to think Apple will offer transportation-as-a-service, and not sell a car directly to consumers. 

    In the short run, Uber has more to worry about than VW. 

    Longer term, though, VW will eventually have something to worry about. 
    mjtomlin
  • Reply 6 of 26
    PF-UK said:
    Nice photo of a BMW i3
    It's actually not a photo of any car, it's a photo of a park with a CGI car drawn in it. You can find evidence of that by searching for this image online and finding different colours of the car. Eg., https://appleinsider.com/articles/15/03/18/bmw-research-head-avoids-apple-car-question-says-obstacles-present-to-deeper-partnership  <--

    In fact, many videos of cars you see in car commercials and movies are also not actually real cars. They are CGI also.

    <--

    After watching this video, check the images of the wheels in both images before you attempt to argue that it's just a photoshopped image. There's a big clue in the wheels.
    JWSCOfer
  • Reply 7 of 26
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    "We look forward to new competitors who will certainly accelerate the transformation of our industry and bring in new skills. The incredible valuation [of Apple] and thus the virtually unlimited access to resources instills a lot of respect in us. A real challenge - dimensions larger than that within our industry (e.g. Toyota Motor Corporation) I have already said: The most valuable company in the world will again be a mobility company - it can be Tesla, Apple or Volkswagen AG." 

    Translation: We’re out of ideas and look forward to stealing some from Apple. 



    OferBeatslolliverdk49
  • Reply 8 of 26
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    blastdoor said:
    I'm still inclined to think Apple will offer transportation-as-a-service, and not sell a car directly to consumers. 

    In the short run, Uber has more to worry about than VW. 

    Longer term, though, VW will eventually have something to worry about. 
    I’m sort of inclined to agree. 

    They can sell a wodge of expensive cars that won’t get replaced for twenty years. 
    Or they can get a steady income stream by running some kind of rental scheme. 
  • Reply 9 of 26
    There sure is a lot of “ink” being spilled over a very vague rumor from a shaky source.
    anantksundaram
  • Reply 10 of 26
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,446member
    blastdoor said:
    I'm still inclined to think Apple will offer transportation-as-a-service, and not sell a car directly to consumers. 

    In the short run, Uber has more to worry about than VW. 

    Longer term, though, VW will eventually have something to worry about. 

    I absolutely agree with this sentiment. And it’s the reason they invested a billion in Didi Chixung; to gather data and model a dispatch system for an autonomous ride-hailing service.
  • Reply 11 of 26
    I think he's looking forward to being Apple's OEM.

    Given that Audi and Porsche -- for those wondering, they're owned by VW -- currently make some of the most stylish-looking cars out there, and his is a company that will have a lot of spare manufacturing capacity (and employees) as the EV revolution inevitably gains speed, and he has plant & equipment that can manufacture in some reasonable volume, he's probably getting in front of the line. And that's a good thing, IMHO.

    That said, I am with @SpamSandwich above: I am still a bit dubious about this rumor, especially as 2024 is a long way off in the rapidly-evolving EV business.

    edited December 2020 SpamSandwichviclauyycmuthuk_vanalingamfotoformat
  • Reply 12 of 26
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,457member
    Remember way back when Blackberry and Nokia ‘welcomed’ Apple to the cellphone market with sarcasm dripping from their teeth? I do. Remember Steve Ballmer’s dismissive comments about the iPhone? I do. Why does the CEO of Volkswagen sound the same to me in 2020?
    edited December 2020 Beats
  • Reply 13 of 26
    Sounds like Apple just asked VW as a manufacturing partner. 
    tmay
  • Reply 14 of 26
    We’ve been making cars for a long time. Theses computer guys aren’t just going to drive right in.  :D
    Beats
  • Reply 15 of 26
    viclauyyc said:
    Sounds like Apple just asked VW as a manufacturing partner. 

    It sounds more like VW is asking Apple to make it a manufacturing partner. 
    muthuk_vanalingamlkrupp
  • Reply 16 of 26
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    viclauyyc said:
    Sounds like Apple just asked VW as a manufacturing partner. 
    Mmmmm.
  • Reply 17 of 26
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    viclauyyc said:
    Sounds like Apple just asked VW as a manufacturing partner. 

    It sounds more like VW is asking Apple to make it a manufacturing partner. 
    Again,

    Mmmmm …
  • Reply 18 of 26
    viclauyyc said:
    Sounds like Apple just asked VW as a manufacturing partner. 

    It sounds more like VW is asking Apple to make it a manufacturing partner. 
    no way.
  • Reply 19 of 26
    PF-UK said:
    Nice photo of a BMW i3
    Yes, an ID.3 would be more appropriate.
  • Reply 20 of 26
    lkrupp said:
    Remember way back when Blackberry and Nokia ‘welcomed’ Apple to the cellphone market with sarcasm dripping from their teeth? I do. Remember Steve Ballmer’s dismissive comments about the iPhone? I do. Why does the CEO of Volkswagen sound the same to me in 2020?
    Lol ? persecution syndrome much ? The rivalry between car companies is not as toxic as what's happening with tech companies, there's far less salt involved when they are taking jabs at each other. Don't forget that those guys don't just compete at the consummer level, but also in motorsport. Racing competion is where those guys are spending a lot of their R&D budget, and the breaktrhough used in sportcar are then making their way into consummers cars. It's a radically different beast than a few tech companies only doing consummer stuff with little incentive to try hard. While cars makers are still green when it come to software, those guys are not joking around on the hardware side. Especially when it's about luxury cars, did you know that Ferrari got enginners devoted to the sound that the car will make ? From the exhaust to the sound that it's making when you close the door.

    Apple is certainly never going to take part in formula one/e or in les 24h00 du Mans, but Apple infinite R&D budget might still have an indirect impact in motorsport.

    Let's also be real, apple first car is probaly going to be all about user experience, what I'm expecting from them is a car all about comfort and ease of use, something that can stroll around in the city but also good to pick up your kids and groceries. Their first entry is not going to be cheap, it would be surprising to see a premium sedan (too big), but probably a premium hatchback. 

    But I really don't see them doing a "sporty" car that would have a focus on nervosity and driving sensation. Apple is going to be closer to a "consummer" Rolls Royce and Bentley. I would be really really surprised if they are pulling something like a Porsche Panamera.  
    edited December 2020
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