Yes, you read that correctly: the Apple car. Apple was approached by Samsung last year "to develop battery technologies for its wideley rumored electric vehicle" and has since brought a small South Korean battery company into the fold.
While Apple has been thinking about jumping into the electric car market for some time, there is a big difference between making a battery for a phone and making one for a car. The Korean company, which cannot reveal its name due to its non-disclosure agreement with Apple, has patented "hollow battery technology," comprised of cylindrical lithium-ion batteries as thick as two fingers and with hollow centers.
"Because batteries create most heat from the center due to chemical reactions, this company has created batteries where air flow and cooling are smooth in the center of batteries and this can minimize installation of separate cooling device or a device that prevents over-heating. They are also advantageous in high output. By utilizing this space, it is easy to design parallel connection, which is to expand battery capacity, in these batteries."
According to MacRumors, the company may be none other than Orange Power, which filed for a similar patent with the European Patent Office. However, this is "purely speculation" because we cannot know for sure and will likely not find out until the cars are on the market.
Those within the partnered companies have nicknamed the electric vehicle "Project Titan." Bob Mansfield, who has worked with teams from Tesla, GM, and Ford, will oversee all development aspects of the vehicle. Although he retired in 2012, Mansfield is happy to be working on the project, which has now reportedly adopted a two-pronged approach, working not only on the physical car, but the software that will make it self-driving.
While some reports are saying we could see these cars as early as 2019 or 2021, we wouldn't start the countdown clocks just yet. There is still a lot to do, and a lot of fine tuning.