Apple in talks with Korean manufacturers for its EV supply chain: report

Apple is talking with multiple EV component manufacturers in Korea, according to an industry source. The US tech giant plans to start producing an all-electric vehicle in the next few years and seems to be laying the groundwork for the Apple Car’s supply chain already. 

“Apple officials have been in Korea for business talks with its Korean partners in the semiconductor and display sectors. As seen in Apple’s smartphone business, the company is seeking business partners in Korea for its EV business,” a senior industry executive directly involved in the matter said. 

“Without partnerships with Korean vendors, Apple won’t be able to complete its EV business plan. As far as I know, Apple has talked with LG, SK and Hanwha, but the talks are still in the early stages,” the insider told the Korean Times

Apple taps Tesla battery supplier CATL for EV development

Apple is rumored to be specifically talking to SK Innovation and LG Electronics. SK Innovation is SK Group’s EV battery-making arm. Meanwhile, LG Electronics recently established a joint venture, called LG Magna e-Powertrain, with auto manufacturing company Magna International. 

The tech giant’s talks with SK Innovation hints that Apple might be considering other battery chemistry options other than lithium-ion cells. In June, Apple reportedly planned to tap into Tesla’s battery supplier in China, CATL, for lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) cells. Most EV battery manufacturers in Korea also make lithium-ion batteries. 

Apple still seems to be exploring partnerships across the EV supply chain for its electric vehicle. So far, Apple has allegedly pursued partnerships with Hyundai or Volkswagen to help produce its long-rumored car. There are some reports of Apple partnering with Canada-based Magna International, which offers EV manufacturing services, including body-in-white manufacturing, paint shop services, and even vehicle assembly. 

The Apple Car is expected to go into production by 2024, although analysts at Loup Ventures believe it could start later in 2028. For now, however, the company seems to be setting the groundwork for the Apple Car. 

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