Apple Discontinues Electric Car Ambitions to Focus on Generative AI Innovations

In a strategic pivot, Apple has decided to discontinue its much-speculated project of developing an autonomous electric vehicle. The tech giant is reallocating the efforts of nearly 2,000 staff members, previously dedicated to the car project, towards advancing generative AI technologies.

The shift in focus was communicated internally by Apple’s COO, Jeff Williams, and Kevin Lynch, the vice president who was at the helm of the electric vehicle initiative, as reported by Bloomberg.

Interestingly, at the Mobile World Congress (MWC), an unexpected brand stole the show with a stunning demonstration, highlighting the unpredictable nature of the tech industry.

Leading Apple’s AI division is John Giannandrea, a key executive who has been concentrating on generative AI projects, including the development of advanced large language models (LLMs) similar to AI chatbots, such as ChatGPT, for the past several years.

However, not all team members will transition smoothly, with Bloomberg revealing impending layoffs. TechCrunch has already reported some layoffs, though the total number affected remains uncertain. 

The restructuring impacts a broad range of professionals, from software engineers to those in specialised roles within Apple’s “Special Projects Group” (SPG), which encompassed the electric car team.

Since 2014, Apple has been exploring the potential of fully autonomous and electric vehicles, competing with giants like Tesla, and investing billions into the project.

The company’s latest innovation, the Apple Vision Pro mixed-reality headset, marks its first new product category introduction since the Apple Watch in 2015, drawing significant attention for its forward-thinking design and capabilities.

Despite the buzz around generative AI technologies following the emergence of ChatGPT, Apple has been relatively quiet, not unveiling any major generative AI advancements even as rivals Google, Microsoft, and Samsung have made notable strides in this arena.

Rumours in July suggested Apple was developing an internal AI chatbot, Apple GPT, based on a proprietary model. With Apple’s history of reserved announcements on generative AI integration, the industry is keenly awaiting potential reveals at the upcoming WWDC in June.


Apple’s strategic redirection from electric vehicles to generative AI signals a significant shift in priorities, aligning with the tech industry’s growing fascination with AI capabilities.

This move might reflect Apple’s intent to capture a leadership position in the next wave of tech innovation, especially as it has lagged behind in the generative AI race. The implications for the electric vehicle sector and those professionals caught in the transition are profound, underscoring the volatile nature of tech industry careers. 

As Apple redefines its innovation roadmap, the broader question remains: how will this pivot influence the competitive dynamics of both the automotive and AI industries?

With the eyes of the world on Apple’s next moves, one wonders, will this strategic pivot spark a new era of innovation for the company, or will it be a missed opportunity in the electric vehicle domain? Only time will tell. Thanks for reading.

News source: ZDNet.

Photo of author

John Abiola

John is a tech and investment enthusiast fueled by a passion for blockchain technology and innovative ideas. With a knack for digital marketing and eCommerce business acumen, he stays motivated to share his knowledge and insights through various channels, inspiring and educating others on the latest developments in these industries. Join John on his journey as he delves into the limitless possibilities of technology, investment, digital marketing and eCommerce.

When you purchase through some of the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Leave a Comment