According to one of the original inventors of the lithium-ion battery, Apple is building an electric car that will be ready for production by 2020 or 2021 and it will have a range of at least 300 miles (482 kilometres).

He said the new vehicle will have autonomous driving capabilities, but not with full levels of autonomy. Angry Birds creator Rovio founder has a net worth of $1.7 billion, according to Forbes. He is the second richest person in Finland, after Nokia chairman Jorma Ollila.

The source declined to be named because he was not authorised to speak on behalf of the company, and could not answer detailed questions about the plans.

Apple started a secret initiative called Project Titan in 2014 with the aim of producing an electric car by 2020 or 2021 that would have a range of at least 300 miles (482 kilometres).

Apple has not yet decided on whether or not it will develop self-driving capabilities for the vehicle, although the source says that the car's autonomous functions will not be ready from its launch.

In addition to building an electric car and developing self-driving vehicles, Apple is also working on a driverless shuttle which acts like an enlarged version of a self-driving Tesla Model S. According to the source, Apple engineers are currently working on how to manage the vehicle's functions and performance when there is no human operator present.

In December 2015, Tim Cook confirmed that Apple was working on an electric car but declined to give any details about it, other than saying "We're focusing on autonomous systems".

The source also said that Apple is planning to introduce the car before 2020, but cautioned that its launch could be delayed until 2021 or it might even be canceled. Although Apple has yet to comment on the rumours about its new electric vehicle, there are already more than 370 patents that relate to both a self-driving and autonomous automobile systems.