BMW i3 technology rumored to be of interest for Apple Car

Apple's Project Titan—dubbed Apple Car by the media— is widely reported to be all about automotive technologies. The latest rumor involves a partnership with BMW, specifically for the carbon fiber bodies used in the BMW i3. Manager Magazine (Google Translated):

The German automaker BMW and the Californian technology company Apple have negotiated a far-reaching cooperation. Apple was interested in the body of the BMW i3 electric cars, Manager Magazin reported in its latest issue (release date: Jul 24th). Company CEO Tim Cook was considering to use the BMW model platform for a car project, they say in the business environment. First negotiations in late autumn 2014 but were broken off. They had agreed to keep talking and to check the views from time to time together.

Here's what our own Derek Kessler wrote after taking a BMW i3 out for spin at CES 2014:

The i3's materials are as exotic to the average driver as the powertrain. It is a BMW, so they are very nice materials, but it's unusual to get in a car that has fibrous recycled plastic door and dash panels coupled with an undulating band of open pore eucalyptus. The exposed carbon fiber monocoque shell (instead of a traditional welded steel frame, the i3 uses a single-piece molded and fused carbon fiber shell) is balanced against a wool-and-recycled plastic blend.

Regardless of whether or not this rumor—or partnership—pans out, Apple industrial design is all about materials and I'd expect anything they put out to be as innovative in construction as it is software and integration.

We likely won't see anything official for several more years, but it'll be interesting to watch in the meantime.

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.