Apple to Invest $3.6 Billion in Kia Motors for Apple Car Production

Apple is rumored to be planning to invest 4 trillion won ($3.6 billion) in Kia Motors as part of a planned manufacturing partnership between the two companies, according to Korean site DongA Ilbo (via Bloomberg).

Apple car wheel icon feature triad
Apple and Kia (an affiliate of Hyundai) are said to be establishing a production relationship that will see Kia build Apple Cars at its U.S. facility located in Georgia.

Apple could sign a deal with Kia as soon as February 17, with the aim of introducing Apple Cars in 2024, though that release timeline is earlier than some prior launch estimates. Apple and Kia are aiming to produce 100,000 vehicles per year when manufacturing kicks off.

There have been multiple reports of a partnership between Apple and Hyundai, and prior reports have suggested that Hyundai's Kia brand will handle manufacturing. Earlier in January, Korea IT News also said that electric vehicles manufactured by Apple would likely be made at Kia's Georgia factory.

When rumors of talks between Hyundai and Apple first hit, Hyundai confirmed that it was holding discussions with Apple, but later revised the statement and eliminated the Apple mention.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today that Apple is planning to collaborate with Hyundai and will use Hyundai's E-GMP battery electric vehicle platform for its first vehicle chassis in addition to using the Kia factory for U.S. production. Kuo believes an Apple Car will come in 2025 "at the earliest" but Apple is already on a tight schedule if it wants to meet that deadline, so a launch could be pushed back further.

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Top Rated Comments

steve09090 Avatar
45 months ago

Nothing says 'this is our first attempt' like Kia.

Maybe I am being harsh. Is Kia a premium vehicle now? Last I checked speakers were options.
Mercedes in Germany & Jeep in the USA are rated well below Kia (in top position) in reliability.

Hyundai's Genesis is rated the highest of any luxury car for reliability. And of course, Hyundai own Kia. So I reckon Apple are in pretty good hands.

Edit: Genesis was rated best premium brand for the last 4 years!

https://www.carsguide.com.au/car-news/kia-the-best-quality-new-car-brand-in-2020-study-as-tesla-debuts-in-last-place-unofficially

Double Edit: Here is the actual report: https://www.jdpower.com/sites/default/files/file/2020-06/2020070%20U.S.%20IQS.pdf
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
soa Avatar
45 months ago
Hopefully kia just handles the production and apple designs the whole car instead of ripping one off of the kia lineup.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Scoob Redux Avatar
45 months ago

Nothing says 'this is our first attempt' like Kia.

Maybe I am being harsh. Is Kia a premium vehicle now? Last I checked speakers were options.
While my personal cars are Porsche and Tesla, I rent a lot of cars when I travel for work and I love Kia. I always choose them when possible over the alternatives in their categories. Fit and finish as well as features are excellent. This isn't Kia of the old days :)
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
filmantopia Avatar
45 months ago

I still can’t see Apple making a car. Just seems like an investor pipe dream.
Always there are comments like this as rumors brew for a new Apple flagship product. It takes some imagination but it's not hard at all to see Apple doing it.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Bistroengine Avatar
45 months ago

Mercedes in Germany & Jeep in the USA are rated well below Kia (in top position) in reliability.

Hyundai's Genesis is rated the highest of any luxury car for reliability. And of course, Hyundai own Kia. So I reckon Apple are in pretty good hands.

Edit: Genesis was rated best premium brand for the last 4 years!

https://www.carsguide.com.au/car-news/kia-the-best-quality-new-car-brand-in-2020-study-as-tesla-debuts-in-last-place-unofficially

Double Edit: Here is the actual report: https://www.jdpower.com/sites/default/files/file/2020-06/2020070 U.S. IQS.pdf ('https://www.jdpower.com/sites/default/files/file/2020-06/2020070%20U.S.%20IQS.pdf')
My boss just bought a new 2021 Genesis GV80. Hot damn it’s a nice looking SUV! It’s got crazy luxury features all over the place inside too.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Bistroengine Avatar
45 months ago
I still can’t see Apple making a car. Just seems like an investor pipe dream.

I will add, after thinking about it for a bit, I CAN see Apple licensing an advanced version of CarPlay with assisted driving and Apple Maps tied closely together. Take it a step further and the system may even have some type of Augmented Reality heads up display in the windshield also. Also thinking smart phone unlocking and digital car keys would be part of the system as well. Apple's investment with KIA may be to have them build one of the first cars with this advanced CarPlay system built right in. It will still be branded a KIA vehicle but probably advertised with 'Apple Smart Drive' or whatever it ends up being called.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)