Two Senior Engineers Depart Tesla As Model S Moves Toward Production

Departures drive share prices down 19 percent.

Published: 16-Jan-2012

Palo Alto -- Tesla Motors Inc. plunged a record 19 percent after saying two senior engineers on the new Model S luxury sedan left the U.S. electric-car maker just months before the auto goes on sale.

Peter Rawlinson, Tesla’s vice president and chief engineer, and Nick Sampson, who supervised vehicle and chassis engineering, departed this month, according to Ricardo Reyes, a spokesman for the Palo Alto, California-based company.

“Having completed conceptual and design engineering work on Model S, Peter has decided to step away to tend to personal matters in the U.K.,” Reyes said yesterday. Sampson had “fully transitioned” off the Model S at the time of his departure, Reyes said without elaborating.

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