Apple has been working on its self-driving car technology, albeit quietly, for a while now, and it recently received permission to test the vehicle on the road. It’s now two weeks since the permission was granted and, finally, an Apple-powered self-driving car takes to the streets of the state.
Apple received a permit in California earlier this month so it could start testing Lexus cars with self-driving technology, and already, Apple has been spotted driving around the Silicon Valley area.
A new report from Bloomberg showed footage of a white Lexus RX450h crossover outfitted with the usual sensors and hardware you’d see on a self-driving car. Most of it appears to be third party, including a Velodyne-made LIDAR sensor.
While Apple has remained very quiet about its work on the project, various bits of information suggest that Apple is looking at a 2020 launch for whatever it is that it’s working on. It’s still not clear whether Apple actually intends to build a self-driving car or a self-driving platform.
With Apple’s DMV clearance, California has permitted 30 companies to test their own self-driving cars, including Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, Waymo, and Uber. Lawmakers in the state had to rewrite the legislation so that these self-driving vehicles can operate lawfully.
When Bloomberg contacted Apple, the latter’s spokesperson refused to comment on the proposed technology from the company. However, with the emergence of leaked images, there can be no doubt that Apple is already testing the technology on the Lexus RX450h. Interestingly, this is the same vehicle Google’s Waymo is using to test out its own autonomous driving technology.