Reports: Head of unofficial Apple car effort is leaving

In case you missed news about the unofficial Apple car, the head of the not-so-secret effort is leaving the company, according to a couple of reports. The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg News both said late Friday that Steve Zadesky, who has been with Apple for 16 years and has been heading the Titan project for the past couple of years, is exiting for personal reasons. Zadesky’s LinkedIn profile still says he’s vice president at Apple; it’s unclear when the former Ford engineer is leaving the Cupertino company, the Journal reported.

As we’ve reported on SiliconBeat and the Mercury News, Apple hasn’t confirmed it’s working on a self-driving electric car, but many signs point to it. They include talks with the California DMV about self-driving car regulations, a facility in Sunnyvale and poaching people with automotive experience from other companies, including Tesla.

Although Zadesky is reportedly leaving for personal reasons, the Journal also mentioned that Apple’s car project is facing some challenges, including “ambitious deadlines even though some on the team felt that those targets weren’t attainable.” The Journal has previously reported that Apple has set a “ship date” of 2019.

Also: Daimler’s CEO reportedly said over the weekend that he saw that Apple and Google are further along on “automotive projects” than he assumed. (Where has he been?) Dieter Zetsche made his comments after meeting recently with 70 companies in Silicon Valley, according to a German weekly.


Photo: A sign at Apple headquarters in Cupertino. (Associated Press)


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