Rumors of an Apple-branded electric car have been floating around for a long time, but a new report suggests that the fate of the project may be in serious jeopardy.
Bloomberg reports that the highly anticipated Apple Car is in limbo, and that many of the individuals Apple has been poaching from around the automotive industry have departed. “Hundreds” of the secret Apple automotive team have either quit, been laid off, or have moved to different departments within Apple, according to unnamed sources.
Early on, chatter regarding the Apple Car suggested that the California-based company was poised to roll out its own consumer vehicle at some point. Those ambitions were either overblown or have since been scaled back, as it now seems that Apple may rely on a partnership with an existing automaker or simply put its own vehicle on hold indefinitely.
Not one to let a struggling project become unwanted baggage, Apple has reportedly placed a deadline on its automotive efforts. The company plans to decide by the end of 2017 whether the self-driving platform will officially be axed.
Not long ago, Apple was rumored to be in talks with supercar manufacturer and auto tech development house McLaren. McLaren firmly denied any talks with Apple regarding investment or buyout, but the rumor itself was indicative of Apple’s seemingly scattershot efforts to break into the automotive industry as a whole.