BMW would be open to working with Apple on a car project

Available in iPod white?
Available in iPod white?
Photo: BMW

BMW would be open to collaborating with Apple to build a next-generation car, according to the company’s production chief, Oliver Zipse.

Speaking earlier today in Frankfurt, Zipse noted that “We live in a world of partnerships,” and that an Apple (or even Google) car wouldn’t be out of the question for BMW.

Apple car project is ‘good news’ for Nissan, says CEO

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We'd like to buy this directly from Apple, OK?
Concept art: Josh Baré/DeviantArt CC
Photo: Josh Baré/DeviantArt CC

Apple’s secret electric car project has been met with heavy skepticism from some of the biggest players in the auto industry, but according to Nissan’s CEO, he sees Apple entering the market as a good thing.

During a presentation at the Mobile World Congress on Monday, Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Nissan-Renault Alliance said he welcomes the idea of outside companies getting into the electric car business.

Toyota vehicles won’t support CarPlay anytime soon

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Don't expect pure CarPlay in Ford vehicles anytime soon. Photo: Apple
CarPlay isn't coming to Toyota after all. Photo: Apple

Toyota was one of the first car manufacturers to announce it would support CarPlay, but the company is pulling back on its plans to embrace Apple’s car infotainment system. Despite still being listed among Apple’s CarPlay partners, Toyota says it’s sticking with its own Entune systems.

The company says that while it has talked frequently to both Apple and Google about CarPlay and Android Auto, it has no plans to bring the technologies to its cars in the United States anytime soon. Toyota’s manager of advanced technology communications, John Hanson, told the New York Times, “We may all eventually wind up there, but right now we prefer to use our in-house proprietary platforms for those kinds of functions,” Mr. Hanson said.

While Toyota’s not so hot on CarPlay, other manufacturers like Ford, BMW, Volkswagon, and GM are more bullish on Apple’s car offerings. Here’s a full breakdown of which service auto makers currently support:

Apple car? Cupertino’s got the design talent to transform another industry

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BMW_Gina_concept_car
One of the designers in Apple's Industrial Design Group helped create this shape-shifting fabric-covered car for BMW. Photo: BMW

As rumors that Apple is making a self-driving car rev up, a peek under the hood of the company’s famed Industrial Design studio reveals a crew of talented automobile designers.

An interest in futuristic cars is embedded deep within the DNA of Apple’s vaunted design team. Working under Jony Ive, Apple employs designers who worked on several fantastic concept cars, including a fabric-covered BMW that shifts shape depending on speed.

Ive has long been obsessed by cars. (He has quite a stable.) As a teenager, Ive wanted to be a car designer. He visited a U.K. design school that specialized in automotives with a view to studying there, but he found the other students too weird. They were making “vroom vroom” noises as they sketched. Instead, he went to Newcastle Polytechnic (which has since been renamed Northumbria University).

A look at other key members of Apple’s design team, and at a super-secret research-and-development facility planned for the company’s new campus, offers a few clues about how Cupertino might go about producing innovative and unconventional cars.