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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Apple Car: Hyundai allegedly fears being demoted to a contract manufacturer

According to a report, the South Korean auto company is internally divided over an Apple partnership – it represents a great risk.

Talks about a partnership with Apple allegedly cause internal discussions at Hyundai: Managers of the South Korean car manufacturer fear damage to their own brand if the manufacturer is only seen as a contract manufacturer for the US group in the future, as the Reuters news agency said, citing People reported. Apple wants to be the boss and so does Hyundai, which usually doesn’t work well.

Hyundai traditionally does not like to work with “outsiders”, the same applies to Apple. According to information from Reuters, the two companies have been exploring an auto partnership since 2018, but have not made good progress since then. It is very difficult for Hyundai to open up, according to an insider. Before working closely with Apple, Hyundai managers would have to be replaced in order to prevent a clash of corporate cultures

At the beginning of January, Hyundai had surprisingly confirmed talks with Apple , only to backtrack after a short time: They were in negotiations with “various companies” about cooperation on autonomous cars, it was said. Apple usually insists on the highest level of secrecy among partners, and some suppliers meticulously avoid ever calling the iPhone company by name. Apple’s car project is an open secret; the group has been researching and developing vehicle and autonomous systems for years.

Apple intends to design the parts for its electric vehicle itself and obtain them from different suppliers, Hyundai or its subsidiary Kia would only take over the final assembly of an Apple car according to this plan, ideally in the USA, notes the news agency, Kia also exists for this One-way production capacity in Georgia – alternatively, the joint establishment of a new factory would be considered. According to a previous report, the start of production of the Apple car is targeted for 2024, but a “beta version” should appear beforehand.

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