A new report from Korean outlet DongA claims that Apple and Kia are nearing a deal that would see Apple make a $3.6b (4 trillion KRW) investment in Kia for future electric car production.
Apple is targeting Hyundai subsidiary Kia for its US facilities in Georgia. Through its investment Apple hopes to begin electric car manufacturing by 2024 with the initial expectation of 100,000 vehicles per year. That figure could further be expanded to 400,000 units per year.
Industry insiders claim that Apple is leaning towards Hyundai as its main partner to enter into car production because of its electric vehicle platform – E-GMP – its production facilities in the US and its reported ability to begin vehicle production by 2024.
Apparently Kia will handle the production and manufacturing, while Apple will be in control of self-driving hardware, software and user experience, battery technologies, semiconductors and form factor.
Apple and Hyundai have been in talks for awhile. Hyundai admitted as much, only to backtrack later on. Currently it has been reported that Hyundai execs are mulling over whether to enter into business with Apple. However insiders claim that Hyundai is more than ready and sees this as an opportunity to gain favor with Apple’s loyal base of users around the world.