According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple has hired a seasoned veteran from the automotive industry for its rumored car initiative. The report claims that Apple has hired Doug Betts, who previously led global quality control at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Betts worked at Fiat Chrysler until last year and started at Apple earlier this month.
While details of Betts’ role at Apple are sparse at this point, he has updated his LinkedIn page to reflect his new position. His profile says he joined Apple in July, but only lists his title as “Operations – Apple Inc.” out of San Francisco.
The report goes on to state that Apple also recently hired one of the top autonomous vehicle researchers from Europe. Earlier this year, the WSJ reported that Tim Cook approved Apple’s electric car project back in 2014 and has assigned “hundreds” of employees to the project’s team. It has been reported in the past that Apple has hired president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Research & Development Johann Jungwirth, along with other auto industry execs. We broke down some of the notable members of Apple’s car team here, as well.
Furthermore regarding hires for its electric car team, Apple has been in an ongoing poaching war with Tesla. Although earlier this year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk pointed out that his company has poached 5 times as many employees from Apple as Apple has from Tesla. Musk also commented that he “hopes” Apple will enter the car market.
Apple is hoping to launch its own car by the year 2020, according to reports from earlier this year.