A deal between Foxconn and Fisker might eventually lead to Apple having its self-driving car produced by the same company that assembles iPhones.
Electric vehicle-maker Fisker agreed on Wednesday to team up with Foxconn to develop a “breakthrough electric vehicle.” Foxconn will manufacture the car.
Searching for an experienced vehicle manufacturer
Apple has been unable to keep under wraps that it’s working on a self-driving car. It’s reportedly creating the design and looking for a partner to handle production. So far, it’s allegedly talked to Hyundai and Nissan, but negotiations have broken down with both.
And for the same reason: neither company was willing to be a silent partner. Published reports said both car companies were reluctant to become OEMs, with the autonomous vehicle being branded as an Apple car.
Apple Car could someday be made by Foxconn
But making products for other companies is Foxconn’s business model. It assembles iPhone, Mac and iPad, for example. But it has little experience with automobiles, while Apple is clearly looking for a partner with plenty of know-how.
That apparently hasn’t escaped Foxconn’s attention. The Korean company recently began setting up an automotive arm. And now there’s Wednesday’s deal with Fisker, which should give the electronics-maker real expertise. It’s exactly the sort of agreement Apple is supposedly looking for.
More on the Fisker/Foxconn electric car partnership
California-based Fisker designs and manufactures electric vehicles. But it’s now turned to Foxconn to jointly develop a car. The Korean company will manufacture the vehicle starting in 2023 at projected annual volumes of over 250,000. It will be sold under the Fisker name.
In the announcement, Foxconn touted its relevant skills. “The key success elements of electric vehicle development include the electric motor, electric control module and battery,” said Foxconn Technology Group Chairman, Young-way Liu, in a statement. “We have two major advantages in this regard, with an exceptional vertically integrated global supply chain and the best supply chain management team in our industry.”
These advantages would also be useful if Apple turns to Foxconn for its self-driving car.