KIA Motors Corp jumped as much as 14.5 per cent after a local media report that Apple Inc will invest 4 trillion won (S$4.8 billion) as part of a collaboration with the South Korean carmaker on making electric vehicles.
There's also a chance Hyundai's name may not appear alongside Apple's eventual PR about the auto. The companies may sign a deal on February 17 and aim to introduce Apple cars in 2024, according to the newspaper, which said they have an initial target to produce 100,000 autos a year. The Apple Car will land as a very high-end electric vehicle, and working together with other carmakers is the only way to go because they already have the know-how and resources for mass production.
As 9To5Mac reports, Kuo believes that Hyundai will be the manufacturing partner for the Apple Car, but more importantly, Apple will use Hyundai's E-GMP electric car chassis, which Hyundai announced back in December.
Should the Apple Car prove to be successful, this could see Apple pursue subsequent, regional partnerships with General Motors and PSA, Apple Insider suggests. The facility will begin production in 2024 at a rate of 100,000 cars annually and have the capacity to ramp up to a 400,000 car-per-year rate. The news pushed stock in Hyundai up nearly 20 per cent on the day.
Kia shares on Wednesday reached their highest levels since 1997 on the news. Overall, Apple is said to have planned an initial run of 400,000 units for its first electric auto. Setting up a auto plant can cost billions of dollars and take years, likely the reason why Apple is talking to potential partners. The Apple Car is rumoured to feature LiDAR technology, which could add a lot of depth to onboard AI functions.