Are you going to buy an Apple car? And a Sony car? Seriously, electronics giants Apple and Sony are currently developing vehicles.
And the Amazon car? Again, it’s really happening. Yes, new car brands are popping up more and more because we are now living in the Wild West of tech billionaires during an electric car gold rush led by Tesla’s Elon Musk.
So which brands could turn into car companies? Let’s take a look at which cars are coming and which ones might be coming.
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The Sony car
This is really what is happening. Sony let the world know it wanted to enter the automotive industry in 2020 when it launched its Vision-S 01 concept at the Consumer and Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The PlayStation maker followed that up with another early 2022 unveiling of its Vision-S 02 SUV.
Both were just concepts, but in March this year Sony announced it had signed a deal with Honda to produce an electric vehicle.
“This alliance aims to bring together Honda’s mobility development capabilities, vehicle body manufacturing technology and aftermarket service management experience cultivated over many years, with Sony’s expertise in the development and application of imaging, sensing, telecommunications, network and entertainment technologies, to achieve a new generation of mobility and services that are closely aligned with users and the environment, and continue to evolve in the future,” Sony and Honda said.
The joint venture between Sony and Honda is expected to start producing vehicles by 2025.
The Apple car
Not content with making ridiculously stylish computers and phones, Apple has been trying to produce an Apple Car since 2014, but with little luck.
This seems to be because the Mac and iPhone maker is trying to create a full version of a standalone system. So, unlike Sony, which has partnered with a real car manufacturer, Apple seems to be exhausted in the pursuit of conquering self-driving technology, which comes down to finding the answer to life.
What started as a secret program called Project Titan in 2014 employing hundreds of engineers, the Apple Car has run into major difficulties.
In 2017, Apple CEO Tim Cook said, “We are focused on standalone systems. It’s a core technology that we consider very important. We sort of see it as the mother of all AI projects. This is probably the most difficult AI project to achieve. »
They’re certainly not taking the easy route with plans to build a fully self-driving car without any controls, including a steering wheel.
Still, Apple persists, and in 2021 a fleet of Lexus SUVs were testing the technology. Recent reports indicate that Apple has added 10 more drivers to its crew of self-driving cars.
It seems that if Apple wants to make its car a reality, it will have to do so with an established automaker and drop its plans for autonomous dominance for the time being.
The Google car
Google seems to be going down the same route as Apple with big plans to make a fully self-driving car only to realize that it’s a lot more difficult than just coming up with a mysterious algorithm that helps people shop for shoes on the internet.
Google’s Street View project began in 2007 with a fleet of converted Toyota Prius driving around California taking 360-degree photos. Not only would this service become part of our daily lives, allowing us to literally see where we were going on the map before we got there, but it helped form the backbone of Google’s mapping for its self-driving car technology.
Then came the goofy but adorable Firefly test cars in 2015 as part of the Chauffeur project. These were Google’s tiny self-driving cars with a front end design that bore more than a passing resemblance to a Koala’s face.
In 2016, Project Chauffeur gave way to the creation of Waymo, a subsidiary of Google which to this day tests its autonomous technology in the Jaguar i-Pace. Waymo also had a bumpy road with collisions involving pedestrians. In Arizona, Waymo cars have even been attacked by locals with knives and rocks.
The latest from Google Car is a joint venture between Waymo and ride-sharing company Uber. Uber is also testing self-driving technology in its tractor-trailer freight service.
The Red Bull car – RB17
That’s also going to happen, but the price of Red Bull’s F1-inspired RB17 hybrid hypercar might keep most of us from owning one.
Announced in June 2022, the RB17 was created by Red Bull F1 team technical director Adrian Newey.
Powered by a V8 petrol engine and electric motors, just 50 of the hybrid RB17s will go on sale for around A$26 million in 2025.
The Amazon car – Zoox
Do you really think Amazon founder Jeff Bezos was going to let Elon Musk take all the glory? Certainly not! Not only are they in a space race against each other with Bezos’ Blue Origin and Musk’s SpaceX, but they’re also trying to outdo each other here on Earth in the self-driving car business. Musk has Tesla and Bezos has Zoox.
Autonomous tech company Zoox has been around since 2014, when it was launched by Australian designer Tim Kentley-Klay.
Using Toyota Klugers Zoox has been testing its self-driving technology in San Francisco since 2018.
Zoox’s incursions caught Bezos’ attention. In 2020, Amazon acquired Zoox.
Bezo’s is taking self-driving cars in a different direction than Musk. You see, Zoox is a taxi service, unlike Musk’s Teslas which are personal cars.
The Zoox robotaxi was revealed to the public in May 2022. Resembling a loaf of bread with wheel and floor-to-ceiling windows, the robotaxi is fully autonomous and can carry four passengers.
American rapper Kanye West seems to be an unstoppable force not only in the music world but also in the fashion world. His influence (and his ego) is so strong that it seems inevitable that he will also want to meddle more in the fabric of our lives by creating something we can drive – the Ye Car.
Kanye is also a car enthusiast and can count a few insane rides among his car collection, such as a custom Lamborghini Urus, Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Stirling Moss, Bugatti Veyron, Aston Martin DB5 and black Sherp ATV, in which he appeared for a McDonalds television commercial during this year’s Super Bowl.
What would a Ye car look like? Well, it would most likely be a Ye Truck with odd but rugged styling and go-anywhere ability, though it would probably never be driven off the posh city streets.