Car industry execs respond to possibility of Apple Car

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By Larry Banks

With the constant rumours of an all-electric Apple Car still doing the rounds, it was inevitable that executives from the automative industry responded to the news. The first comments come from the chief executive officers of Daimler, Volkswagen and Nissan, during interviews at the Mobile World Congress and Geneva car show events, which are being held this week.

Apple Car – a good thing…?

CNET reports that CEO of the Nissan-Renault Alliance, Carlos Ghosn, has in fact responded positively to questions regarding reports of Apple’s electric vehicle: ”If Apple does it, obviously it’s good news for us,” he said. ”The fact that a company outside of the auto industry wants to do electric cars is refreshing”. Nissan has already launched en electric vehicle – the Leaf hatchback.

The CEO of Daimler, Dieter Zetsche, also commented based on similar questions in terms of Google and other high tech companies getting in on the vehicle manufacturing business during the Geneva motor show.

“Google and the likes want to get involved, I don’t think in the first place to build vehicles,” he said. “We have to understand that, and then to find our roles, to which extent they are complementary, to which extent we become dependent, to which extent we are competitors”. He already spoke of concerns last month regarding Apple’s possible electric vehicle development while also downplaying the threat.

The sentiment of Daimler also mirrors comments from the Volkswagen CEO who said he welcomed news of Apple’s car project, and Google’s existing project to launch driverless vehicles.

The first reports of Apple’s plans to build an electric car surfaced last month, with The Wall Street Journal publishing a story that claimed Apple was hiring hundreds of employees to work on car technology. Many of those hires are said to come from companies such as Tesla, and other car manufacturers.

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