More fuel for the Apple Car rumors: Apple is continuing its hiring spree from the automotive industry for its automobile project, “this time hinting at the company’s work prototyping car parts,” according to 9to5Mac.
The article says new hires include former Tesla employee David Masiukiewicz, who joins Apple this month as senior model maker at the company’s Product Realization Lab where Apple prototypes many of its products, and Kevin Harvey, who joined Apple in August after leaving a role as CNC Machine Shop Supervisor at Andretti Autosport. It’s been previously reported that Apple hired former Tesla’s vice president of Vehicle Engineering and former Aston Martin chief engineer, Chirs Porritt, to work on “special projects”
“The hires seem to hint at Apple’s work prototyping car parts at its Product Realization Lab, a facility that was previously used for prototyping new Macs, iOS devices and Apple’s other products,” says 9to5Mac. “he lab, at least for other Apple products, is where model makers, machinists, and other engineers at Apple prototype products and parts working alongside the Industrial and Product Design Teams and others.”
As we reported earlier, German publication Frankfurter Allgemeine claims Apple may be planning to use automotive contract manufacturer Magna to manufacture the Apple Car at a plant in Austria currently used to produce Minis. The publication also says that Apple has created a “secret lab” in Berlin where it has head-hunted a small cross-disciplinary team of 15-20 upcoming engineers from a number of German car companies.
Keep in mind that Apple hasn’t officially confirmed any plans for an automobile.
Chance that the latest Apple Car rumors are true (IMHO): 90%. Apple is certainly working on a car project, but it’s yet to be revealed what form and strategy its automotive plans will take.