Kuo: Apple car still in the early stages, probably not until 2025-2027

Earlier this week, Reuters reports that Apple is aiming for 2024 to produce its long-rumored electric vehicle with ‘next’ battery technology, but Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes a launch is likely to be until 2025-2027.

Apple Motorcycle Icon is Purple

In a research note obtained by MacRumors today, Kuo said that Apple Car specifications have not yet been finalized, adding that he would not be surprised if the vehicle’s launch period is further expressed after 2028 or later:

We predicted in a previous report that Apple will launch Apple Car in 2023-2025 […] However, our latest survey indicates that the current development schedule of Apple Car is not clear, and if the development starts this year and everything goes well, it will be launched early in 2025-2027. Due to changes in the EV / self-driving market and Apple’s high quality standards, we would not be surprised if the launch schedule of Apple Car is postponed until 2028 or later.

Kuo said the market was too exaggerated about Apple Car’s launch schedule, and he advised investors not to buy Apple Car-related shares at the moment.

Although he does not believe the Apple Car has any chance of success, Kuo said there is uncertainty about how competitive Apple will be in the EV / self-driving market due to the backlog of deep learning / artificial intelligence:

The market has high expectations for Apple Car. Yet we remind investors that while Apple has a range of competitive advantages, it is not always successful in new
business. Apple, for example, did not enter the market for smart speakers. Demand for HomePod and HomePod mini was lower than expected, and the development of new speaker models was temporarily suspended. The competition in the EV / self-driving car market is fiercer than that for smart speakers, so we think it’s dangerous to conclude that Apple Car will succeed.

If Apple Car wants to succeed in the future, the key factor is big data / AI, not hardware. One of our biggest concerns about Apple Car is that when Apple Car is launched, the current self-driving car brands will build big data for at least five years and will be conducive to deep learning / AI. How can Apple, a latecomer, overcome this backlog?

Reuters claims that Apple’s self-driving vehicle will have a unique ‘monocell’ battery design that ‘frees up space in the battery by eliminating pockets and modules that contain the battery material, potentially resulting in a longer range per charge.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently responded to Apple Car’s rumors on Twitter, claiming that a ‘monocell’ battery is ‘electrochemically impossible’. Musk also claims that he issued “during the darkest days” of the production of Model 3, CEO Tim Cook, to discuss the possibility that Apple would acquire Tesla for a fraction of its current value, but Cook called the meeting apparently rejected.

All in all, it sounds like the Apple Car remains a distant reality.