DigiTimes reported on Thursday, citing industry sources, that Apple suppliers Foxconn and Luxshare Precision are among possible candidates to produce the much rumored Apple Car. Both companies have recently made forays into the future vehicle market.
As the world’s largest assembler of iPhones, Taiwan-based Foxconn expanded its business into the future vehicle industry in 2021. Foxconn’s parent company, Hon Hai Technology Group, is expected to introduce two more electric cars in October, following the launch of three last year. Hon Hai’s first electric vehicle, the Model T smart electric bus, was also delivered on Thursday.
Meanwhile, China-based Luxshare reached a strategic cooperation agreement with Chery recently to build electric vehicles (EVs).
According to the DigiTimes’ report, some analysts have argued that Foxconn would not be likely to become the leading manufacturer of the Apple Car, as they believe South Korea-based Hyundai Motor and Canada-based Magna International, both of which have been in partnership talks with Apple, hold more advantages over Foxconn when it comes to car manufacturing.
Luxshare will need to overcome different challenges to become a future car manufacturer, the sources said. While Luxshare may rely on China’s relatively mature car industry to develop automotive technologies, it will face strong competition from China-based automakers as well as smartphone suppliers who are expanding their business into car manufacturing.
Although some analysts predict that the Apple Car could enter volume production and make its market debut sometime between 2023 and 2024, industry sources said it is too early to assume that Apple has finished building its EV whiel also having carried out the necessary road testing.
While Apple might not work with Foxconn and Luxshare for its car project in the beginning, there is a possibility that the two suppliers could play a key role in Apple’s future vehicle plans, the sources said.
Foxconn could still build up its presence in Apple’s vehicle supply chain by gradually accumulating car-manufacturing experience and leveraging its MIH platform, electronic components products, and experience from previous collaborations with automakers (including Stellantis and Fisker).
The sources pointed out that South Korea’s LG Energy Solution (LGES), SK On, and Samsung SDI are possible candidates to supply EV batteries to Apple Cars in the US. Meanwhile, Apple might turn to CATL and BYD to supply batteries for its vehicles that are to be sold in China, the sources explained.