Apple Takes A Bite Out Of Lamborghini

Thu 4th Aug 2022

The highly secretive ‘Project Titan’ car project developed by technology behemoth Apple has been in the headlines again this week after it was revealed that the company has poached an influential designer from Italian sportscar brand Lamborghini.

Luigi Taraborrelli has worked in a variety of key roles for Lamborghini since joining the company company in 2008, most recently as head of research and vehicle dynamics. But according to a report in Bloomberg, Taraborrelli quit his role in May and is soon to commence working on Apple’s self-driving vehicle initiative, Project Titan.

Shrouded in secrecy, the Apple car project has been mooted since 2014 when the company’s chief executive Tim Cook spoke about the technology company turning their hand to automotive.

"We're focusing on autonomous systems. It's a core technology that we view as very important. We sort of see it as the mother of all AI projects. It's probably one of the most difficult AI projects actually to work on,” Cook said.

Those predicted difficulties appear to have hit the development hard, because while there has been very little official information released about the project, unofficial reports have told of hiring and firing of executives over the last few years, and many different changes in direction.

It’s understanding that Apple might encounter difficulties in starting-up an automotive project, development is highly expensive, and the brand are entering the market with the industry in a state of flux. The introduction of electric battery vehicles, and automated driving systems have added an extra layer of complexity to the project. Proposed partnerships with some of the big car brands such as Porsche, Hyundai and Nissan have all grabbed headlines, but there is nothing concrete from secretive headquarters, believed to be in Sunnyvale California.

According to technology blog macrumours, Apple has applied for 248 car-related patents since 2000, and says this about the company’s automotive ambitions: ‘Apple's interest in a car dates back to before the original iPhone, and Apple executives discussed building a car before the device launched. Steve Jobs considered developing an Apple car, and even met with the manufacturer of the lightweight, inexpensive "V-Vehicle" in 2010, but is said to have ultimately decided not to work on a car in 2008, preferring instead to focus development on the iPhone.’