Car Industry

Whither Apple Car?

After a spate of intriguing early rumors, chatter about the mythical Apple Car has lately gone a bit dark.

In late summer 2015, it seemed like we couldn't get away from talk of the mystical, magical Apple Car. Reports were rife with speculation that so-called Project Titan was speeding ahead, that Apple was hiring engineers by the hundreds and that the company was well on its way to reinventing the automotive industry.

I confess I've always been a bit skeptical of the notion, and in my rundown of the situation last year, I was quick to note one sobering fact about Apple product development: "We'll never know how many products have been birthed, gestated, iterated, honed and ultimately killed before ever seeing the light of day in Cupertino."

Indeed, more recent Apple Car rumors definitely point toward a darker state of the union. Johann Jungwirth, lured away from Mercedes-Benz by Apple, and Steve Zadesky, who joined from Ford, were said to be two of the biggest players in the supposed Project Titan. Both have left the company within the last six months. Project Titan hires have supposedly been frozen and, well, the wheels at the rumor mill have creaked to a stop.

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Motor Trend's June 2016 cover.

Motor Trend

If that weren't bad enough, Tesla has just stepped forward and, in my opinion, stolen much of Apple's thunder with the Model 3 and its 300,000-plus reservations.

Motor Trend has dedicated a sizable chunk of its latest issue to the topic of what, before Tesla's latest unveiling, was the world's most anticipated car. Motor Trend testing director (and techy car guru) Kim Reynolds provides a state-of-the-state on Project Titan and sits down with a team of designers to sketch out what the Apple Car might look like -- at least, conceptually.

As the latest issue hit newsstands, Motor Trend invited designers Garrett DeBry and Tim Huntzinger, along with Mikey Campbell from Apple Insider and Yours Truly from this very site to discuss and debate how realistic their vision of a theoretical Apple Car could be. That discussion is embedded above for your viewing pleasure, and the comments are wide open below for you to let us know what you think and whether there's room for a big Apple in an already incredibly competitive automotive marketplace.