Apple Vs Tesla: How We Expect Tech Giants To Shape The Electric Car Market

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apple and tesla the future of electric cars

As if owning a phone, computer, laptop, earphones, tablet, and a watch all made by the same company wasn’t enough, we can soon add a car to that list. Technology giants Apple Inc. is expected to release its own electric vehicle in the not-so-distant future. While the California based organisation is remaining tight-lipped on the plans, we look at what we already know and how it will shape the future of electric cars alongside the competition.

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Project Titan


Apple’s venture into the electric vehicle market, dubbed Project Titan, has been on the backburner since developments began back in 2014. Since then there has been 11 separate iPhone launches, and 8 watches released by the US firm. So a busy-schedule excuse would back up, but why has the automobile project been put off? Rumours of leadership problems and executives not actually realising just how difficult such a project would be, reports began to question whether Apple had possibly bitten off more than it could chew.

Fast-forward to 2020 and a reported expansion of Apple’s car park to accommodate its new employees fell alongside fresh funds being pumped into the project. 3 years after CEO Tim Cook confirmed the company’s focus on autonomous systems, it seems we may start to see Project Titan finally begin to take-off.


The Competition


As expected, the competition is fierce. Apple is not only up against the BMWs or the Nissans of the world. Nor will it find its toughest competition among the Chinese giants BYD or BJEV. Recently recognised as the richest man in the world, Elon Musk founded Tesla in 2003, and it is Tesla who sit atop the EV throne as it sells 64% more electric cars than any other manufacturer.

As an attempt to reaffirm its position as number 1, Tesla’s Roadster is set for release some time around 2022, and it is scarily impressive.

tesla roadster set to release in 2022

Aesthetically it is difficult to find a better car, it matches the suave exterior of a classical sports car whilst adding a minimalist element to really emphasise the Roadster’s jump into the future.

However impossible it may seem, Tesla’s performance actually overshadows its looks. More than doubling its closest non-Tesla electric vehicle’s range, the Roadster will be able to travel 620-miles before needing to be recharged. A range that could see you drive from London to Paris and back on a single charge.

The all-wheel-drive electric supercar can hit 60mph from standstill in a mouth-watering 1.9-seconds, and only an extra 2.3-seconds to hit the 100mph mark. Impressive for a car that seats four people. Tesla wasn’t lying when it said the Roadster would provide record-setting performance and efficiency. Over to you Apple.


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Apple’s flagship


So what can we expect of Apple’s first venture into the EV market? How will it stand up against the supercar-to-be that is the Tesla Roadster? Well that is where things become tricky. With the possibly-named iCar not due for release until 2024 at the earliest (some sources close to the project quoting dates closer to 2027), spec details are somewhat difficult to come by.

new apple car kept under wraps

Because of Apple’s commitment to autonomous driving, it is hard to imagine its flagship model being able to hit the speeds of the Roadster due to safety reasons, but there is no reason to believe the gap won’t close as more versions are manufactured.

There have been some features rumoured in various reports, including a chameleon-esque exterior that can change colour, and taillamps that light up in different patterns to communicate with other drivers. While these quirky attributes sound exciting, it will be some time before we can expect to hear details coming from Apple itself.

Electric vehicles are predicted to make up 58% of all sold passenger vehicles by 2040, compared to 2.7% today. You can be sure that Apple will want a large slice of the pie that is the electric market, just as it did with the mobile phone, laptop, and watch markets. Expect it to make its arrival with a bang.


More than just a car


Aside from the Roadster, it is Tesla’s other projects that have lead it to its unmatched success thus far. Selling 42 cars every minute certainly helps, but the duty of care to its customers that goes above and beyond is what makes Tesla stand out above other manufacturers.

Instead of waiting to use the standard charging points across the UK, Tesla customers can access the brand’s exclusive global network of chargers, aptly named Superchargers. With over 20,000 Superchargers across Europe, North America, the Middle East, and Asia, you are never far away from a convenient charging point, that can be included in your route by Tesla’s on-board Trip Planner.

tesla supercharger in action

If exclusive chargers weren’t enough, Tesla provide its customers with an app that can monitor and even control charging their vehicles. Notifications that alert you when your car is fully-charged are just another useful benefit that maintain Tesla’s position as the best selling EV manufacturer.

It is clear that Apple have a lot to do to compete with the likes of Tesla, but considering the tech giants history, you would have to be brave to bet against them.


What does the future look like?


Looking further ahead than the upcoming releases, what does the future of electric cars look like? Technology has advanced so much in the last 10, 20, 30 years that it is impossible not to wonder where we will be in another 10 or 20, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see both Apple and Tesla at the forefront of future advances.

During recent rumours about potential Apple car developments, reports suggested that its engineers had been given the task of trying to revamp a cars interior to prepare for a future in which users are merely passengers, as oppose to drivers. This backs up earlier claims that software was being developed so that users could input their destination and be driven there with next to no engagement.

You would think any future product developed by Apple would include the capacity to update its software, much like other products. Tesla remain a step-ahead in this regard, partly thanks to its current presence in the car manufacturing industry.

tesla autopilot system set to improve in future

All new Tesla’s come with advanced hardware that will provide full self-driving capabilities in the future using software updates.

And it doesn’t plan on stopping there. On top of being driven to any destination you input, failure to input a destination will result in the car using data from your calendar to take you where you need to go. In the absence of any data being available, the car will take you home.

Park seek mode means that you can simply exit your car at your destinations entrance, and the car will find a spot and park itself. Tap the Tesla app to summon the car back to you.

With Apple keeping its cards close to its chest when it comes to the development of a branded car, it is difficult to predict exactly where the key battles will be won or lost, but as it looks set to go toe to toe with Tesla for the future of electric cars, it is a competition that could rival any Hollywood blockbuster movie.


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