Kia, on Wednesday,revealed it is considering cooperating with multiple foreign firms on driverless electric cars. However, the South Korean automaker made no mention of a report linking it to a project with tech giant Apple Inc.
Kia’s comment came after domestic online publication Edaily reported late on Tuesday that Kia’s parent, Hyundai Motor Group, had decided Kia would be in charge of proposed cooperation with Apple on electric cars.
Hyundai Motor declined to comment. Apple was not immediately available for comment outside of U.S. business hours.
Kia’s listed sister company Hyundai Motor Co said earlier this month it was in early talks with Apple, after local media reported the firms were discussing an electric car and battery-tie up, sending Hyundai shares up nearly 25%. Apple declined to comment at the time.
In December, it was reported that Apple was moving forward with self-driving car technology and was aiming to produce a passenger vehicle that could include its own breakthrough battery technology as early as 2024.
Last week, Kia changed its corporate brand to simply ‘Kia’ from ‘Kia Motors’ in what it said was part of a new strategy aimed at taking the company beyond vehicle manufacturing. Kia did not provide specific details of new projects.
Shares in Kia were up 8.2%, while shares in Hyundai Motor were down 0.6% of 0254 GMT, compared with a 0.3% rise in the wider market.