Apple Ended Talks with BMW and Daimler over new Vehicle Cooperation
On Monday we posted a report titled "A Small Secret Project Titan Team Found in Germany is preparing for Possible Production in 2020," wherein we noted that while Daimler's CEO stated in 2015 that they had no plan to become the Foxconn of Apple, that Magna was hungry and foolish enough to want to get in at the ground level with Apple's new automotive team. Apple's new Project Titan team in Berlin had been secretly negotiating with Magna and today the fallout with Daimler came to light.
According to Germany's leading business and financial daily the Handelsblatt reported today that their sources have told them that "German carmakers Daimler and BMW have ended talks with Apple over a cooperation deal on an electric car.
Apple's plan has been to develop a highly-networked electric car that would also be at least partially self-driving. Neither of the three companies would even confirm that negotiations had taken place.
Sources said the talks with both German carmakers collapsed over the key questions of who would lead the project and, above all, which company would have ownership of the data.
Apple wants the car to be closely built into its own cloud software, while the German carmakers have made customer data protection a key element of their future strategy. The talks with BMW collapsed last year, while those with Daimler collapsed more recently."
This is why Patently Apple focused on Daimler's CEO comments about not wanting to be the Foxconn of Apple. It was sarcastic and very telling that talks with Daimler weren't going their way.
At the end of the day, while Apple is looking for control and a Foxconn-equivalent for a future car, we're bound to hear continuing rumors about Project Titan so as to build PR value for their Apple branded vehicle. Case in point, this week we also reported that Apple hired former Tesla / Aston Martin VP who was responsible for key car designs such as TeamOne-77 supercar, V12 Zagato and Aston Martin DB9.
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