Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) recently announced that it hired Doug Field, Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) vice president of Mac hardware engineering, as the electric car maker looks to bring some of Apple’s consumer electronics expertise to its vehicles. Field worked for Apple for more than five years, and he is set to become Tesla’s vice president of vehicle programs, the unit responsible for driving development of new vehicles.
According to Tesla’s announcement, Field led the development of many of Apple’s newest products, including the latest MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and iMac. Although Field has been designing Apple computers for the past several years, he has previous experience in the automotive and electric vehicle industries. According to his LinkedIn profile, Field began his career as a development engineer for Ford (NYSE:F) and also worked for Segway before moving to Apple.
“Until Tesla came along, I had never seriously considered leaving Apple,” Field said in Tesla’s press release. “I started my career with the goal of creating incredible cars, but ultimately left the auto industry in search of fast-paced, exciting engineering challenges elsewhere. As the first high tech auto company in modern history, Tesla is at last an opportunity for me and many others to pursue the dream of building the best cars in the world — while being part of one of the most innovative companies in Silicon Valley.”
Tesla co-founder and CEO Elon Musk noted the importance of Field’s experience at Apple in the hiring announcement.
“Doug has demonstrated the leadership and technical talent to develop and deliver outstanding products, including what are widely considered the best computers in the world,” Musk said. “Tesla’s future depends on engineers who can create the most innovative, technologically advanced vehicles in the world. Doug’s experience in both consumer electronics and traditional automotive makes him an important addition to our leadership team.”
This isn’t the first time that Tesla has managed to lure talent away from Apple, CNET reports — in 2010, Tesla hired George Blankenship, Apple’s vice president of real estate.
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