Although the Apple Car is only a rumor at this point, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Chief Design Officer Jony Ive have landed spots on The Drive's list of The 10 Most Influential People in Automotive Technology (via Patently Apple). The Apple executives join well-known automotive industry individuals like Elon Musk, co-founder and CEO of Tesla Motors, and Uri Levine, founder of popular crowd-sourced driving app Waze.

cook ive automotive list
The main reason behind Ive and Cook's appearance on the spot seems to be the Apple Watch's ability to communicate with vehicles, similar to the recently launched Bentley app, with tentative references to the company's rumored ongoing work on the ultra-secret Apple Car. Jony Ive ranks sixth on the list, with The Drive referencing his influence on Apple's "cleanliness and iconoclasm" as a leader of the tech industry, and a potentially disruptive force in the car industry.

With smartphones having displaced wristwatches for many, a late-model iPhone is the best-designed thing they own. Ive’s work—via Apple’s blockbuster conferences, whose videos he narrates—introduced words like “chamfered,” “beveled,“ and “anodized” to a general American lexicon. Moreover, its cleanliness and iconoclasm—well illustrated in this scene from Legally Blonde—leads the tech pack. The best car interiors reflect that aesthetic beautifully.

Three spots up, Tim Cook came in third on the The Drive's ranking, which calls out the Apple CEO for guiding the company into support of various automotive-related software and, potentially, hardware, including Apple CarPlay, various Apple Watch compatible car apps and the rumored electric vehicle collaborations. Because of this, the site believes Apple's reach now "extends even deeper into the car world."

Steve Jobs was more than a whip-cracking captain—his turtleneck, New Balances and enthusiastic presentations were the face of the company. No one envied his replacement. Still, Tim Cook has become a competent, if quieter hand at the helm of the world’s largest company, one whose reach—with Apple Carplay, Apple Watch-based car apps, and rumors of EV collaborations—extends ever deeper into the car world.

There has been a steady stream of rumors surrounding the Apple Car for a few months now, the most recent of which point to Apple's plan to purchase "large expanses of real estate" for the project. A couple hundred Apple employees are suggested to be working on "Project Titan," which is believed to be electric-powered, potentially self-driving, and launch in 2020 at the earliest.

Read More: Apple Hires Former Tesla Engineer With Expertise in Prototyping Car Parts

Related Roundup: Apple Car

Top Rated Comments

2457282 Avatar
66 months ago
This reminds me of when Obama was given the Nobel peace prize before he even got into office. Really makes me wonder about how political these things have become and disconnected from any form of reality. In the case of Obama, you can think whatever about him, but to be fair, he had done nothing other than get elected and that seemed good enough to get a Nobel. Here with Tim and Jony, it's much the same. They created a great phone and a great watch, so of course we are going to give them an award - for a car.....
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tw1ll Avatar
66 months ago
Oh for Goodness sake, the most influential people in the automotive industry are the grown ups responsible for 98% of the real (i.e. non-stupidly expensive) cars used by real (i.e. non-stupidly wealthy) people. They are the ones responsible for the continual trickle-down of usable tech from high spec to budget cars and who have significantly improved energy efficiency in response to legislative pressures. Suggesting Ive and Cook are influential in the industry just blows all credibility of the publisher.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MH01 Avatar
66 months ago
Okay. Someone is kissing butt to get invited to future Apple events, hoping Apple launches a car.

while I enjoy my Apple Watch, it's done bugger all in terms of my automotive experience.

What exactly did Ive do to deserve this?
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
69Mustang Avatar
66 months ago
I read the headline. Laughed. I read the article. Laughed again. To be fair, Apple does get the clicks.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
countryside Avatar
66 months ago
Err... I am not sure what to think about this. It is no surprise they are getting awards, but for automobiles?
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Bubba Satori Avatar
66 months ago
The pipeline of innovative, leg humping automotive headlines.
Looks like the Drive has something brown on their nose.

Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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