The Apple Car has therefore become a trend-setter before it even came to be, but on the other hand, this is without a doubt good news especially because the competition is typically the biggest boost to innovation.
Apple’s long-term plan of expanding to the automotive industry has caught the attention of all its rivals, including those based in China who immediately noticed the potential of such a move, especially given the trends that are signaling an obvious transition to electric power.
But in a recent post on Chinese social media platform Weibo, CEO Lei Jun confirms the company is trying to develop a level 4 self-driving car. The post comes as Xiaomi is looking for no less than 500 engineers to join its automotive team and therefore develop a vehicle which at one point would be supposed to compete directly against the Apple Car.
Xiaomi is one of the tech behemoths that have already confirmed plans to expand in the automotive field, with the company previously revealing it wants to spend $1.5 billion to create its very own electric car.
Xiaomi’s plans align with the strategy of the rest of the tech giants considering an expansion in automotive as well. The Apple Car, for example, is also believed to be a self-driving electric vehicle, and given Apple’s proven experience in the tech world, it’s likely to feature advanced capabilities that would meet at least the level 4 standards.
Xiaomi building a level 4 car is certainly ambitious, especially for a company that’s now making its first steps in the automotive world. Level 4 vehicles can operate independently and don’t require human intervention, so in theory, they can drive all by themselves as long as you tell them where you want to go.
On the other hand, you’d better not hold your breath for the Apple Car. Sources with knowledge of the project said the vehicle is projected to see the daylight in 2025 at the earliest, though there’s no doubt Xiaomi wants to hit the shelves ahead of its American rival.