Apple’s so-called iCar project has been talked about in hushed tones for years as the company has released very few snippets about the development. We can look all the way back to early 2015 when Apple announced it could produce a car to “give Tesla a run for its money”, according to Business Insider.
A few sightings here and there and a few more rumours add up to, well, not much. But industry insiders do reckon the iCar (or Titan, or whatever it’s called) will be here soon-ish. And that there are literally thousands of Apple employees on the project.
But one thing keeps putting a spoke in the wheel: top executives on the Apple car project keep leaving. Only recently Doug Field left to join Ford. The FT says Field joined Apple in 2018 as vice-president for special projects, coming over from Tesla, and that he’s set to become Ford’s chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer.
Wedbush analyst Dan Ives commented about Field’s departure: “It’s a blow to Apple’s ambitions on the automotive front.”.
But this is just the latest departure, with three more major exits already this year. In February, a co-founder of the project, Benjamin Lyon, left Apple; Jamie Waydo, a former Google self-driving project engineer also left; and Dave Scott, head of Titan’s robotics team, departed in May.
Whatever insiders say, four high-profile exits is a big loss to the project.