Apple Deploys 24 New Self-Driving Lexus SUVs


Apple has expanded its fleet of self-driving cars to 27 vehicles as it works to catch up to competitors, reports Bloomberg.

Apple has remained quiet about the tech giant's self-driving vehicle ambitions and little is known about the initiative beyond its impressive sounding codename, Project Titan. Since then, it has acquired an additional 24 Lexus SUVs, according to the DMV, two in July, seven in October, two in November, six in December, and seven in January. After reaching the conclusion that developing and manufacturing an Apple branded vehicle from scratch was either too challenging or expensive - or perhaps both - the company chose to streamline its research and focus exclusively on self-driving auto technologies.

This past June, Apple for the first time confirmed its interest in the automotive space when Tim Cook said that Apple is, in fact, working "on autonomous systems" for cars.

Apple has dramatically increased the number of self driving vehicles it is testing, Bloomberg reports. "You've got kind of three vectors of change happening generally in the same time frame", Cook told Bloomberg past year, referring to self-driving cars, ride-sharing, and electric vehicles.

But Apple has a lot of catching up to do if it's going to be a player in the self-driving auto space. Cook has even described the company's effort as a "large project" around autonomous systems.