Tesla President of Automotive Jerome Guillen named to lead trucking


US electric car maker Tesla Vice President Jerome Guillen poses at the Paris Auto Show on the last press day on October 3, 2014. The Paris Auto show opens to the public on Saturday. 

Eric Piermont | AFP | Getty Images

Tesla has moved its former president of Automotive, Jerome Guillen, into the role of president of Heavy Trucking according to a regulatory filing dated March 11, 2021.

The change means less responsibility for Guillen, who oversaw the company’s entire vehicles business since his appointment in the third quarter of 2018. He had already served as the leader of Tesla’s truck program, working on a pure battery-electric Class 8 truck, in the role of vice president of trucks and programs there since 2016. He still held the latter role after he was named president of Automotive, according to his LinkedIn profile.

During his time as president of Automotive, Tesla opened its first plant overseas, in Shanghai, and expanded its battery cell supply partnerships. The company’s shares have skyrocketed more than 1000% since Sept., 2018, and Tesla has become a higher volume manufacturer of electric vehicles. But it has also grappled with vehicle quality problems that garnered multiple recalls in the U.S. and abroad, and saw lower ratings on reliability reports from the likes of Consumer Reports and JD Power.

Tesla’s Semi was first announced in 2017 and has been delayed several times.

Having taken reservations for the trucks from companies such as Anheuser-Busch, DHL Group, PepsiCo, and Walmart, Tesla announced delays to its Semi production during an earnings call in the third quarter of 2019, and again in April 2020.

In its fourth-quarter 2020 shareholder deck, Tesla said the Semi program was still “in development” but promised Tesla Semi deliveries would begin in 2021. In its annual financial filing with the SEC for 2020, Tesla did not reiterate that Semi delivery deadline.

Guillen has worked at the company in roles reporting directly to CEO Elon Musk since November 2010.

News of Guillen’s shifting role at Tesla was announced Friday but drew little attention as Musk spent the weekend tweeting to his tens of millions of followers about the company’s automated driving systems which are marketed as Full Self-Driving (even though they do not make Tesla vehicles driverless); the cryptocurrecy Dogecoin, and “woke” culture.

On Monday, Tesla and Musk made headlines and stirred up social media buzz with a filing appointing Musk as “Technoking” of the electric vehicle company, and appointing CFO Zachary Kirkhorn “Master of Coin.”



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