Tech giant Apple has reportedly axed plans to launch its long-awaited autonomous car, following years of delays and huge investments in the project.

    Business publication Bloomberg reports Apple told the estimated 2000 people who worked on the electric vehicle – codenamed Titan – that it would be cancelling the project effective immediately, much to the surprise of its staff.

    Apple first announced it was working on autonomous car technology in mid-2017, however it never officially confirmed its plans to develop a standalone vehicle despite reports that it had started to do so in 2014.

    Despite this, multiple reputable reports in the years since – as well as the hiring of dozens of dedicated vehicle engineers from established companies – provided more information about the now-dead project.

    The so-called Apple car was initially expected to be fully autonomous and launch as early as 2026, though reports last month suggested it had been pushed back to 2028 – more than 10 years since work first started – and with limited semi-autonomous driving capabilities.

    While Apple had reportedly been working on the EV for 10 years, a concept or prototype was never shown, with the industry now left to lament on what it could have looked like.

    It is not known why Apple chose to pull the plug on its project now after a decade of work, though cooling demand for EVs both in the US and globally has been cited as a potential factor.

    According to Bloomberg, some staff members from the Apple car project will be moved across to the tech giant’s artificial intelligence division, which is set to focus on generative AI – however it is expected hundreds of employees will be laid off.

    EV specialist Tesla has previously warned that demand for solely battery-powered models will result in lower year-on-year growth in 2024, following a rapid rise in the past half-decade.

    Jordan Mulach

    Born and raised in Canberra, Jordan has worked as a full-time automotive journalist since 2021, being one of the most-published automotive news writers in Australia before joining CarExpert in 2024.

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