Apple poaches top Tesla Motors executive to work on its electric car project

Chris Porritt, former Tesla and Aston Martin employee, will now work on Apple's secretive car

Doug Bolton
Wednesday 20 April 2016 14:53 BST
The Tesla logo on the bonnet of one of the company's electric cars
The Tesla logo on the bonnet of one of the company's electric cars (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Apple has reportedly hired a top Tesla Motors executive to work on its secretive electric car project.

The poaching of Chris Porritt, Tesla's former vice president of vehicle engineering, will no doubt annoy CEO Elon Musk, who once called Apple the "Tesla graveyard" due to the number of former employees who work there.

As reported by tech site Electrek, Porritt has been appointed to Apple's 'special projects' division, which reportedly includes Titan, the rumoured car project.

Porritt has worked on the development of Tesla's Model S and Model X, and spent almost 16 years working at Aston Martin before joining Elon Musk's company in 2013.

Steve Zadesky - a long-time Apple employee rumoured to be leading Project Titan - left the company in January this year, according to the Wall Street Journal. It's possible that Porritt will be taking his place.

Apple has never publicly spoken about its ambitions in the car industry, but a constant stream of leaks and rumours over the last year have all but confirmed the existence of the project.

Porritt's hiring is the latest in a string of tit-for-tat employee exchanges between Tesla and Apple, but given his seniority, this one could be fairly major.

Don't expect to hear anything about the Apple car soon - the company looks set to remain tight-lipped about it for the forseeable future, and even the most optimistic forecasts claim the car will only enter production in 2020.

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