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Hyundai executives not happy with Apple tie-up

by on29 January 2021


Might not happen

While the Tame Apple Press enthused about a Hyundai making the Apple car, apparently all is not well with that particular fantasy.

We have been pointing out that Apple is really bad at working with other companies and tends to think that they have to do what it tells them. That might work with publishers or even hardware makers, but it really does not when it comes to cars.

Now reports are coming in that executives in Hyundai are divided over a potential tie-up with Apple, and it might not go ahead after all.

Hyundai said earlier this month it was in preliminary talks with Apple, but gave no details. Local media said the firms were discussing an electric car and battery tie-up. In an earnings call on Tuesday in which it reported its best quarterly profit in over three years, Hyundai did not give any updates on talks with Apple or indicate whether they remain active.

However Reuters deep throats say that Hyundai executives are agonising over how to do it, whether it is good to do it or not.

“We are not a company which manufactures cars for others. It is not like working with Apple would always produce great results.”

Ironically Reuters blames Hyundai’s reluctance to work with outsiders, as the reason.  Apparently making engines, transmissions and even its own steel in-house under its vertically integrated supply chain is a bad thing.

Additionally working with Apple would mean removing some executives who do not like Jobs’ Mob.

“Apple is the boss. They do their marketing, they do their products, they do their brand. Hyundai is also the boss. That does not really work”, the insider said.

Another issue is that Apple would prefer to source major components of its own design - frames, bodies, drive trains, and other parts - from a variety of places and rely on Hyundai or Kia for a final assembly site.

While the talks are at an early stage, Hyundai Motor Group has “tentatively decided” that it would want Kia to partner with Apple, not Hyundai Motor, a Hyundai insider said.

Last modified on 29 January 2021
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