Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk is known for making bold statements – but his latest revelation may give even more legitimacy to a long standing Apple rumour.
In an interview with BBC, Musk said its “obvious” that the tech giant would try its hand at building a high-tech electric car. But, when pressed further by the interviewer, Musk said it’s an “open secret” that Apple is working on a Tesla competitor.
“It’s pretty hard to hide something if you hire over a thousand engineers to do it,” he said.
Apple has not commented on the report.
Apple has never officially confirmed it is working on a car; however, rumours surrounding a so-called Apple Car have been floating around for over a year.
Last year the company hired a number of engineers with backgrounds in automotive and battery design. Apple representatives also met with officials at a vehicle testing facility located just outside of San Francisco, near Apple’s headquarters. Site officials later confirmed to The Associated Press that Apple had inquired about using the facility.
It has also been rumoured that Apple is working on a self-driving car.
But excitement about Apple’s car project – rumoured to be code-named “Titan” – ramped up again last week after it was discovered Apple registered a number of car-related domain names, including “apple.car,” “apple.cars” and “apple.auto.”
But Musk said he isn’t intimidated by Apple’s new business venture.
“It will expand the industry,” he said.
“Tesla will still aspire to make the most compelling electric vehicles, and that would be our goal, while at the same time helping other companies to make electric cars as well.”
Apple already has its foot in the door with the auto industry. In 2014 the company penned a deal with a number of auto makers – including Volvo, Ferrari and Mercedes-Benz – for its CarPlay system that allows drivers to access their iPhones through in-car controls. The system allows drivers to make calls, access maps and have Siri dictate their messages.
On Monday, Apple released a dedicated website listing the more than 100 car models that provide CarPlay support.
© 2016 Shaw Media