The Apple Car Might’ve Looked Like a Volkswagen Minibus: Report

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Apple execs reportedly killed the company’s decadelong electric vehicle project last month, and while that means we’ll never see the Apple Car hit the market, we may still have an idea of what it might have looked like.

Several designs for the car alternately took inspiration from the Volkswagen Microbus of yesteryear and the futuristic Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported Sunday.

One look from famous Apple designer Jony Ive, who had creative oversight over the iPhone, iPod, and iPad, showed parallels to a 1950s Volkswagen microbus while another resembled the 2017 Volkswagen ID Buzz prototype, according to Bloomberg.

volkswagen microbus concept

Concept for the 2017 Volkswagen ID Buzz.


Around 2020, the design for the car took inspiration from the Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle, per Bloomberg. With this design, the car was fully white on the side, and had a glass sunroof as well as an identical front and rear “so it would always look like you were driving forward,” Bloomberg reports.

Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle

Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle.


Near the end of Apple’s so-called “Project Titan,” the design for the car reportedly took on gull-wing doors like those you’d find on another EV, the Tesla Model X.

Apple had been working toward a self-driving electric vehicle since 2014 but saw its efforts hampered by leadership shake-ups and launch delays, as well as softening demand for EVs, particularly in the US.

BYD, the world’s leading EV maker, has said challenges in the US market are keeping the company away.

“We’re not planning to come to the US,” BYD Americas CEO Stella Li told Yahoo Finance last month. “It’s an interesting market, but it’s very complicated if you’re talking about EVs.”