One of the autonomous vehicles Apple is testing in California was involved in an accident as it was waiting for a gap to merge into a highway, a filing with the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles revealed.

The car, a modified Lexus SUV, was rear-ended as it travelled at under 1 mile per hour and both vehicles sustained damage, but no injuries were reported.

Some media reports state the incident was due to human error, and a report from last years in Consumer Affairs found drivers have a tendency to rear-end self-driving cars.

However, it quoted Dr Phil Koopman, a software engineer, as saying the problem lies in the fact that connected cars don’t behave in the same way as human drivers.

Last month Apple sparked speculation it is preparing a major push around connected vehicles after re-hiring a former hardware VP who quit the company for a role with electric car maker Tesla.

Doug Field’s appointment to Project Titan suggested Apple is committed to the autonomous vehicle sector, despute recent speculation the company had reduced its work on the project.