Car magazine Motor Trend featured an Apple Car in its June cover story that was the result of what a group of tech and car experts imagined would be coming out from the Cupertino-based company. The publication is now at the center of a controversy for running its "exclusive" Apple Car renderings, which many social media users and other publications heavily criticized.
The Apple Car rendering (above) was created by staff at the Pasadena's ArtCenter College of Design. It comes in a champagne gold color with gull-wing doors and complete with the Apple logo at the rear. In addition to exterior design, Motor Trend's Apple Car cover story also considered how the vehicle could change consumers' riding experience. For instance, the panel imagined Apple could include cameras as side-view mirrors and augmented-reality windshields.
Critics don't take issue with the story itself, however, but on the way Motor Trend presented the story. On Wednesday, the publication's Twitter account teased images of the Apple Car and making it look like the renders were leaked images of the currently in-development vehicle. Jalopnik labels the social media campaign as "misleading." In addition, the cover story slapped the word "exclusive" though Motor Trend's Apple Car wasn't really based on actual information but on discussion between a panel of creatives, notes The Verge. In short, it's all speculation.
The Apple Car isn't the first speculative story from the magazine. Motor Trend's Editor-in-Chief Ed Loh told the Wall Street Journal that they've covered concept vehicles in the past. For instance, a jet car with a bubble canopy or a turbine-powered vehicle. These types of stories are also nothing new for the auto and tech media.
The Apple Car is widely believed to be the company's car project codenamed "Project Titan." The company is reportedly targeting a 2019 release date for the much-anticipated Apple Car.