By Drew Johnson
Friday, Jan 13th, 2012 @ 5:31 pm
 
Just months ahead of the launch of its Model S sedan, Tesla has lost two key executives. The California automaker announced on Friday that its chief engineer and director of chassis engineering for the Model S have both stepped down.

Tesla confirmed today that Peter Rawlinson, Tesl's vice president and chief engineer, has resigned from his post. Rawlinson reportedly stepped down for "personal matters".

Additionally, Nick Sampson, who led the Model S vehicle and chassis engineering, has stepped down from his position with the 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.," Ricardo Reyes, a Tesla spokesman, said. He added that Sampson had "fully transitioned" off the Model S project before his departure.

Tesla's stock fell 19 percent on the news, but company CEO Elon Musk has already announced replacements for both positions.

Former Daimler engineer Jerome Guillen will be taking over for Rawlinson while Eric Bach, a former Volkswagen executive, will be taking the place of Sampson.

Tesla's $49,900 Model S sedan is due out by mid-year.

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