Tesla hires Aston Martin's chief of vehicle engineering, considers Google's "autopilot"
Forward-looking is Elon's middle nameElectric car-maker Tesla has been making lots of announcements lately, and thankfully, unlike Fisker and Coda, the news are rather good. Just yesterday I was writing about their new resale guarantee, and now they've announced that they've made a big hire: Aston Martin's Chief Engineer of Vehicle Engineering, Chris Porritt, has joined Tesla and will have the title of Vice President of Vehicle Engineering.
Tesla writes: "Chris brings more than 25 years of automotive engineering experience to Tesla. Chris joined Aston Martin in 1997 where he brought the Vehicle Engineering function in-house, establishing vehicle dynamics, NVH and durability and later whole vehicle architecture and vehicle packaging, as well as thermal management, aerodynamics and full vehicle test. Chris's team was the group responsible for the architecture of the VH platform cars including DB9 and V12 Vantage."
It's good to see that some of the top talent in the industry is moving from gas cars to electrics. I'm sure Mr. Porritt won't be the last to make the switch.
Tesla's CEO Elon Musk has also said that he's been talking to Google about their self-driving car technology (in 2012 they reached 300,000 miles without an accident). Musk prefers to think of it as an "autopilot" feature like in a plane rather than as a fully robotized self-driving car, and says that if cost can be brought down, it could become a feature in Tesla's vehicles.
“Self-driving sounds like it’s going to do something you don’t want it to do. Autopilot is a good thing to have in planes, and we should have it in cars," he said. “The problem with Google’s current approach is that the sensor system is too expensive. It’s better to have an optical system, basically cameras with software that is able to figure out what’s going on just by looking at things.”
For those who haven't seen Google's car-driving technology in action, check this out: