Tesla’s Autopilot Chief Leaves For Intel

It seems that Tesla is having trouble keeping its executives on board. Now the engineer in charge of the company’s Autopilot program is leaving.

Jim Keller joined the electric vehicle manufacturer over two years ago from Advanced Micro Devices. With the rank of vice president, he’s been responsible until now for both the hardware and software that runs Tesla’s Autopilot autonomous driving feature. But now he’s reportedly leaving for Intel. And in his wake, his responsibilities will be split up.

“Today is Jim Keller’s last day at Tesla, where he has overseen low-voltage hardware, Autopilot software and infotainment,” the company said in a statement on Tuesday, cited by Bloomberg. “Prior to joining Tesla, Jim’s core passion was microprocessor engineering and he’s now joining a company where he’ll be able to once again focus on this exclusively. We appreciate his contributions to Tesla and wish him the best.”

According to Bloomberg, Pete Bannon will run the hardware side of the project, while Andrej Karpahty will assume responsibility for the software. Both are longtime members of Tesla’s senior ranks.

The changeover comes as the Autopilot system falls under increased scrutiny in the wake of a fatal crash last month. That’s when a driver was killed in a Model X on a California highway with the system engaged. Just weeks before, a self-driving Volvo prototype operated by Uber struck and killed a pedestrian in Arizona.

Keller isn’t the first senior staffer to leave Tesla in recent months, either. Eric Branderiz and Susan Repo left the company’s financial division last month. And Tesla’s global sales/service chief Jon McNeil left for Lyft in February.

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  • Harry Nimmergut

    Good thing I won’t be needing a new PC in the near future.

    • Status

      Because Intel only makes CPUs for the consumer market, right?

      • Jay

        When you’re right you’re right.

  • Six_Tymes

    It will be interesting to see the results of this, what might get invented and produced by having him at INTEL. This might turn out to be something very big.

    • Oliver Moore

      He’s the main guy behind the Athlon 64 and Ryzen, so something special will probably happen.

      • MarketAndChurch

        I know he was behind the Athlon but I didn’t know he was also behind Ryzen. Now Intel has two big AMD guys.

  • Dr Strangefingger

    More fallout from SlamConcreteDivider-gate.

    • LWOAP

      What?

  • Dennis James

    Hopefully this will result in fewer “AutoPilot” fatalities.

    • Jay

      That really up to the person behind the wheel and not the system.. as long as their attentive fatalities should happen less.. in most of the AP accidents they admit or have prof that the person behind the wheel had no input.

  • benT

    “Jim’s core passion was microprocessor engineering”

    It’s a bit having the audio engineer come over build a fabulous digital control system into your home.
    Job done ?
    Go on to the next job.

  • Infinite1

    Good move on his part, another AMD guy going to Intel. Can’t wait to see what’s made moving forward

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