Apple Reached Out to Nissan to Build the Apple Car, Talks Ended Abruptly
16 February 2021 - autocar
Hyundai was at one point in pole-position to manufacture the Apple Car for the Cupertino-based tech giant Apple.
Since the negotiations came to no conclusion, the iPhone maker has started looking for other possible partners to build its autonomous EV.
According to a report from the Financial Times, Nissan was one of the companies Apple reached out to, but the talks ended abruptly due to "divisions over branding."
Interestingly, earlier this month, Nissan's bosses expressed the company's willingness to manufacture electric vehicles for companies in the tech sector, suggesting the Japanese automaker could end up working with Apple. But now it seems Nissan wants to do the whole thing on its own terms that would prevent its brand from becoming just a hardware supplier for other industry giants.
Ashwani Gupta, Nissan's chief operating officer, told the cited source the company isn't currently holding any talks with Apple over the production of an Apple Car. He explained that in the long term, the Japanese brand is all about doing business as an automaker.
"We have our own customer satisfaction, which comes by car. No way we are going to change the way we make cars," Gupta was quoted as saying. "The way we design, the way we develop, and the way we manufacture is going to be as an automotive manufacturer, as Nissan."
"We have to check who has got the best competency to catch what the customer is thinking. For this, we can do the partnership, but that is to adapt their services to our product, not vice versa."
Apple is also believed to be considering other companies for a potential EV manufacturing partnership, including BMW and Magna. Some analysts see Renault as the best way to go given its production capacity, though at this point, it's not known if the Cupertino-based giant is discussing with the French firm or not.