Why Tidings of an Apple Car Are Stoking Anticipation for a New Driving Experience

Apple is reportedly ramping up efforts to build a car.

— -- Don't underestimate the ambitions of the world's most valuable company.

Apple is reportedly working on its first-ever electric car with the ambitious ship date of 2019, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal. While Apple has declined to comment on the report, the idea of Apple as an automaker has analysts imaginations running wild.

"Apple is known for their functional design," Eric Ibara, director of residual value consulting at Kelley Blue Book, told ABC News. "I think we are all expecting that same kind of DNA to show up in their car."

The iPhone maker officially veered into the automotive world last year when it released CarPlay, a system that lets users link their iPhones to infotainment systems in some cars, allowing them to safely enjoy an iOS experience while on the road.

Not only will Apple's worth give it a competitive edge, but the company also has the advantage of employing a brain trust of some of the best designers and user experience experts in the world who would have the capabilities to create a sleek electric car to rival Tesla.

Still, even if the Cupertino company is secretly working on a vehicle, Ibara said the actual manufacturing of the future cars would be a "huge challenge" the company would have to overcome.

"There is speculation they could outsource it," he said, "but if you follow the auto industry, there are a lot of challenges in not just designing but manufacturing a flawless vehicle."

While 2019 is still a ways out -- Ibara said it's also likely the big auto makers are ramping up their plans for vehicles that could rival a hypothetical Apple car.

"I wouldn't count out the automakers because they certainly know Apple is in the game so I think they will up their game," he said.