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Apple may be leasing a former Fiat-Chrysler vehicle testing site in Arizona for autonomous vehicle research purposes, according to an unnamed source that spoke to Jalopnik.

Apple has reportedly been recruiting automative test engineers and technicians from vehicle proving grounds around Arizona to work at the site, located in Surprise, Arizona, but neither Apple nor Fiat-Chrysler would confirm Apple's presence at the location.

Fiat-Chrysler in the early 2000s used the site to test the impact of hot temperatures on cars and their components. The location is said to contain multiple road surfaces, a high speed oval, steep grades, and areas dedicated to wet weather testing.

googleearthaztestsite-800x443.jpg
A Google Earth image of the test site in Surprise, Arizona, via Jalopnik

It was sold to a developer for $312 million in 2005 as a housing location, but the plans fell through and it has been unused for the past several months. Jalopnik says that records suggest recent activity has been spotted on the site, which has now been leased to a company called Route 14 Investment Partners LLC.

There's no clear link between Apple and Route 14 Investment Partners LLC, but Apple has been known to use shell companies for leasing properties, trademarking, and other purposes.

It would also not be unusual or surprising for Apple to lease an autonomous vehicle testing site, as the company has made it clear that an autonomous system is something that's in the works.

While Apple was originally said to be working on developing a full autonomous electric vehicle, the company's focus shifted to an autonomous driving system in 2016 after the return of Bob Mansfield, who took over the project.

applelexusselfdriving1-800x521.jpg
One of Apple's autonomous driving test vehicles​

Apple is already testing its autonomous driving system out on public roads using several Lexus RX450h SUVs outfitted with a slew of sensors and cameras.

In June of 2017, Apple CEO Tim Cook publicly confirmed Apple is working on autonomous driving systems.

"We're focusing on autonomous systems. It's a core technology that we view as very important. We sort of see it as the mother of all AI projects. It's probably one of the most difficult AI projects actually to work on," he said.

Article Link: Apple May Be Testing Autonomous Vehicles at Arizona Site
 

farewelwilliams

Suspended
Jun 18, 2014
4,966
18,041
i just want something like uber where
- there's no driver that's trying to talk to you when you really want to be left alone
- i can select music from my phone and it'll play in the car 100% of the time (uber cars sometimes doesn't let you)
- i can pay $300-$500 monthly for unlimited rides
- i can program multiple stops from my phone
- there's always a wire to charge my devices

if that can happen, i can ditch the need to own a car.
 

Swampthing

Suspended
Mar 5, 2004
651
575
i just want something like uber where
- there's no driver that's trying to talk to you when you really want to be left alone
- i can select music from my phone and it'll play in the car 100% of the time (uber cars sometimes doesn't let you)
- i can pay $300-$500 monthly for unlimited rides
- i can program multiple stops from my phone
- there's always a wire to charge my devices

if that can happen, i can ditch the need to own a car.

They've invented these things called taxis. They work like that.
 

Swampthing

Suspended
Mar 5, 2004
651
575
no. they don't do any of that. except maybe the driver not wanting to talk. that sometimes happens (but prefer to not have a driver at all so there's no chance of getting a talkative one)

perhaps you should check out TAPPSI on iOS. you can do many of those things in taxis.
 

fairuz

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2017
2,486
2,589
Silicon Valley
i just want something like uber where
- there's no driver that's trying to talk to you when you really want to be left alone
- i can select music from my phone and it'll play in the car 100% of the time (uber cars sometimes doesn't let you)
- i can pay $300-$500 monthly for unlimited rides
- i can program multiple stops from my phone
- there's always a wire to charge my devices

if that can happen, i can ditch the need to own a car.
I just want a BMW M3, manual.
 
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MallardDuck

macrumors 68000
Jul 21, 2014
1,621
3,061
Apparently knocking on the window will unlock the doors, start the engine, and let you go anywhere you want.
 

Soccertess

macrumors 65816
Oct 19, 2005
1,277
1,824
They haven’t even won on Apple maps, they are years behind driverless tech

SO TRUE!! They can't even get Siri right either.

I am really weary about Apple's hardware these days. I couldn't imagine a car? can you imagine the dongle opportunity here though... Would you need to sync the car to itunes? pay your electricity bill through itunes? John Ives will design a polish aluminum block but you will need a dongle if you want wheels, and a dongle if you want to to use your cup holder.

Worse part, it will have Siri. You would say "take me home". Siri will response "this is what I found on navigation to home on the web" , and then something witty to really piss you off.

Apple should stick to phones for the masses and fashion accessories.
 
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farewelwilliams

Suspended
Jun 18, 2014
4,966
18,041
perhaps you should check out TAPPSI on iOS. you can do many of those things in taxis.
- it's only available in 9 cities in LATAM. i'm in the USA, so this doesn't apply to me or taxis in general
- what exactly does it do that contradicts what i've said? my list seems to still apply to TAPPSI as well.
 

gijoeinla

macrumors 6502a
Sep 19, 2011
686
491
Los Angeles, CA
They haven’t even won on Apple maps, they are years behind driverless tech

Apple Maps will get a mother of an upgrade soon. They’ve been all over L.A. over the past few months with clearly marked vehicles. It’s oubluc knowledge Apple collects big fees from Google so there’s no hurry to go all in on maps just yet but they will. They have to. Slowly they are building up their services to be their own Google.
[doublepost=1511940440][/doublepost]

Hmmm so whose the LLC under??
 

ArmCortexA8

macrumors 65816
Feb 18, 2010
1,075
206
Terra Australis
Tried a search on the Arizona Corporate Commission site but keep getting -

Error.

An error occurred while processing your request.

Yet other random searches show results with no issues - something iffy.

The company is SFI Grand Vista, LLC.
 

groove-agent

macrumors 68000
Jan 13, 2006
1,889
1,779
For the amount of times Apple maps has sent me in circles, or gotten me lost. No thanks. Could you imagine approaching an intersection at high speed and then seeing a spinning beach ball? ;)
 

fairuz

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2017
2,486
2,589
Silicon Valley
The joy of driving can never be crushed!
Sadly, Ferrari has already ruined it by putting full auto in all Ferraris and Maseratis. Lamborghini still offers semi-automatic, which makes a world of difference in terms of fun. And Formula 1 still uses semi-automatic since full auto is banned.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,392
19,460
For the amount of times Apple maps has sent me in circles, or gotten me lost. No thanks. Could you imagine approaching an intersection at high speed and then seeing a spinning beach ball? ;)
Good old jokes about pretty much any software company out there, including software that's already out in many cars.
 
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