The rift between Apple and Tesla looks like it could be heating up a bit.
That's because Apple has reportedly hired Tesla’s former Autopilot software director Christopher Moore for its self-driving vehicle team.
Moore will report to Stuart Bowers, another former Tesla employee, 9 to 5 Mac reported on Friday.
While rumors have been abound about partners and whether or not Apple would even be participating in the auto market, it is now shaping up to look like the company's "Project Titan" self-driving vehicle project is well underway.
The project suffered a setback earlier this year when its former lead, Doug Field, left Apple for Ford.
Moore was known at Tesla for often rebutting claims by CEO Elon Musk about the performance of Tesla's Autopilot. For example, he once told the California DMV that Elon Musk's plans of reaching Level 5 Autonomy within a couple of years were "unrealistic".
Moore also indicated that Musk's statements about autonomy didn't “match engineering reality".
We have reported extensively about potential partners for Apple's vehicle project.
In February, we wrote that a rumored deal between Hyundai and Apple to work together had fallen through. Instead, it was rumored that Apple was potentially engaging with Kia for help in producing its car.
At the time, we noted Kia reportedly "approached potential partners about a plan to assemble Apple Inc.'s long-awaited electric car in Georgia," according to Dow Jones.
The partnership between the two companies could involve a "multibillion-dollar investment", despite the fact that a deal has not yet been finalized, we reported. Since then, few details have emerged about potential partners for Apple.