No one has made a nickel selling electric cars, Bob Lutz told CNBC Monday, responding to reports that Apple has redoubled its automotive efforts and is aiming to introduce an electric car in 2019 or 2020.

“Apple has no experience,” Lutz said. “There’s no reason to assume Apple will do a better job than General Motors, Ford, Volkswagen, Toyota or Hyundai. I think this is going to be a gigantic money pit.”

Apple has heard this kind of talk before. Most famously, from Palm’s Ed Colligan, two months before Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone.

“We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone,” he told the New York Times’ John Markoff. “PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in.”

There’s a pattern to these remarks. It’s the brave talk of an incumbent on the eve of disruption.

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Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter at @philiped. Read his Apple AAPL coverage at fortune.com/ped or subscribe via his RSS feed.