Apple Tilts to iPhone Playbook for Car as Automaker Talks Stall

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Apple Inc. has a tried-and-true approach to launching new products: The company designs in-house, sources its own components, and works with a contract manufacturer to assemble it for sale.

As the tech giant plots a foray into the car market, it could adopt a similar strategy — working with a lesser-known contract manufacturer — after talks with some brand name automakers stalled.

To build a vehicle, Apple has three primary options: Partner with an existing carmaker; build its own manufacturing facilities; or team up with a contract manufacturer such as Foxconn or Magna International Inc.

The Cupertino, California-based company has reached out to automakers including Hyundai Motor Co., but the discussions have not gone well. In this scenario, Apple would develop an autonomous system for the vehicle, the interior and external design, and on-board technology, while leaving the final production to the carmaker. Such a deal would essentially ask an existing car company to shed its brand and become a contract assembler for a new rival.

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