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Apple Reportedly Running Secret Car Lab in German Capital
According to Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (also known as F.A.Z.), Apple's clandestine facility employs between 15 and 20 "top class" men and women from the German automotive industry, with backgrounds in engineering, software, hardware, and sales.
The workers at the car lab are described as "progressive thinkers" in their respective fields who agreed to work with Apple after their ideas for innovation were stifled by the more conservative outlooks of their previous employers.
The article goes on to repeat previous speculation surrounding Apple's rumored vehicle research, noting that the company's first car will be electric, but also ventures to claim that it will lack self-driving capabilities because the required technology is still in development.
Additionally, the report alleges that Apple is investigating a vehicle-sharing model similar to BMW's Drive-Now and European car rental service Sixt, owing to the company's lack of a nationwide distribution network. Similar to previous rumors, Austrian contract manufacturer of high-end cars Magna Steyr is also cited as a partner for vehicle creation once the R&D stage is complete.
Apple Car rumors have gained momentum since early 2015, when The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple has hundreds of employees working to develop an electric vehicle under the codename "Project Titan." The bulk of research and development is thought to be taking place in an Apple-leased Sunnyvale campus in California, where loud "motor noises" were heard, sparking speculation that the building is a secret car testing facility for Apple's automotive project.
Tim Cook teased about the possibility of an Apple Car in February by saying "it's going to be Christmas Eve for a while," suggesting the much-rumored project will not be publicly revealed for some time.