Another Apple supplier branches out into EVs ahead of Apple Car rollout

Tim Cook at assembly plant

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Luxshare, which assembles Apple's AirPods, is investing in a Chinese electric car company.

Even as Luxshare is aiming to take on more iPhone orders for the iPhone, the firm is following its rivals in moving to avoid being too dependent on Apple. Just as Foxconn has recently done, Luxshare is turning to the EV market.

According to Nikkei Asia, the Luxshare Precision Industry firm is forming a joint venture with Chery Automobile's Chery New Energy division.

Chery New Energy is reportedly to be established within the next three months, with a capitalization of $267 million. Luxshare will take a 30% share, and a new plant is under construction.

Luxshare chair Wang Laichun has told investors that the AirPods assembler will not become a car company. Also, the vehicles created will not be branded as Luxshare.

Rather, she said Luxshare aims to become what's known as a Tier 1 supplier. Where a Tier 2 supplier will manufacture components for a product, a Tier 1 firm can make complete devices.

In theory, that could mean that Luxshare does manufacture cars, leaving only superficial branding to Chery. Given Wang Laichun's emphasis that the company will not become a carmaker, though, it's more likely that Luxshare will at most assemble key systems.

By comparison, Foxconn's efforts appear to be concentrating on manufacturing processors for its ventures with Fisker, and Byton.