Hyundai and Apple might not be wasting much time with their electric car discussions. As Reuters reports, Korea IT News has claimed that the two companies plan to sign a partnership for self-driving electric cars by March. Production would start at Kia’s factory in the state of Georgia, with roughly 100,000 EVs rolling off the line as soon as 2024.
A “beta” Apple car could be ready in 2022, the Korean news outlet said. Reuters previously said Apple’s vehicle might lean on cutting-edge battery technology that would extend range, improve safety and avoid the use of cobalt. LiDAR could help the car navigate its environment.
We’ve asked Apple and Hyundai for comment. Hyundai previously confirmed that it was in talks with Apple, but added that it believed the iPhone maker was talking to other car brands at the same time.
There’s still no certainty Apple will release a car, or that it’ll make the reported 2024 target (another Korean publication mentioned a 2027 timeframe). However, the company’s autonomous EV effort appears to be moving forward after years of uncertainty and trouble. The question may be more a matter of whether or not Apple will have an edge by the time a potential car hits the road. Rivals like Tesla are making their own breakthroughs in battery and autonomous driving tech, and a lot can happen in three years.