The long-rumored Apple EV has reportedly been in development for years now, and yet, no one really knows if it will ever come to fruition, nor when that might happen. Last December, news surfaced that the Apple EV project was coming along and that it is scheduled to enter production in 2024 with “breakthrough battery technology.” Earlier this year, Hyundai/Kia admitted that it was in talks with Apple regarding the production of the future model, but that was quickly debunked. Now, however, Reuters is reporting that Apple is in talks with battery suppliers for its proposed electric vehicle.
Those two battery manufacturers both hail from China – CATL, and BYD. CATL currently supplies batteries to other automakers including Tesla, and is the largest automotive battery manufacturer in the world, while BYD isn’t far behind in fourth place. However, sources told Reuters that Apple wants its battery supplier to build its battery packs in the U.S. That could rule out CATL, which is reportedly hesitant to do so based on tensions between America and China, as well as cost concerns.
These discussions are both private preliminary in nature, and so far, there’s no indication that any deal is imminent. Regardless, securing a battery supplier is key to producing a future EV model, as we’ve recently seen with LG Chem and SK Innovations’ drawn-out legal battle. The two managed to reach a settlement, which will allow SK to produce batteries for the Ford F-150 Lightning and other future models at its Georgia-based facility.
However, it’s also worth pointing out that Ford intends to produce its own batteries in the future. The automaker recently announced a joint venture with SK Innovation called BlueOvalSK and launched Ford Ion Park – a battery research and development center. Additionally, at Ford’s recent Capital Markets Day presentation, FoMoCo announced that its next-generation EV batteries will be called IonBoost.