Simon Sproule Departs Tesla For Aston Martin To Reunite With Buddy Andy Palmer

3 years ago by Eric Loveday 41

Andy's September 30th Tweet

Andy’s September 30th Tweet

Simon Sproule From His Nissan Days

Simon Sproule From His Nissan Days

On September 30, former Nissan chief planning officer and lead electric vehicle proponent, Andy Palmer, put out a sincere Tweet (above) of his departure from Nissan to head up Aston Martin.

It took a few days for Simon Sproule, vice-president of communications and marketing at Tesla (former Nissan senior communications officers) to see Palmer’s heartfelt Tweet, but when he did, Sproule bid Tesla farewell to join his buddy Andy at Aston.

Sproule will officially step down from Tesla this month (leaving no void at Tesla, since the automaker has essentially no marketing department and puts little effort into actually communicating with the press, Bloomberg aside).

Truth be told, we kind of saw this coming when Simon was hired 6 months ago, as it can’t be easy to work PR at Tesla (it’s not anything like running the communications show at Nissan).

Mr. Sproule will assume the position of chief marketing officer at Aston Martin under (CEO) Andy Palmer.  The only downside for Sproule in this move is that he’ll have to leave Palo Alto, California behind him, as his ventures take him back to England.

Sproule confirmed the move to PRWeek.  Neither Tesla nor Aston Martin were willing to comment on the move at this time.  Sproule began his work at Tesla this past April.  He departs sometime in November.

Source: PRWeek

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41 responses to "Simon Sproule Departs Tesla For Aston Martin To Reunite With Buddy Andy Palmer"

  1. Mark H says:

    “Sproule will officially step down from Tesla this month (leaving no void at Tesla, since the automaker has essentially no marketing department and puts little effort into actually communicating with the press”

    I really admire Tesla for their, yet again, unconventional approach to marketing. I wonder if that will change with the Model III. Never a dull day….

    1. Blipblop says:

      If on day the production exceeds the demand I am sure that Tesla will look at marketing to get things turning.

  2. Anton Wahlman says:

    Why would you possibly want to leave Tesla right now, this week? You have just finished a quarter, you are days away from the company’s most talked-about announcement ever, and the Model X is on track for volume shipments in the first half of 2015. Why not stay at least a few days, a few weeks, a few months — and bask in the glow?

    1. kdawg says:

      I’m guessing buddy (and CEO) Andy Palmer hooked him up pretty good.

      1. Anton Wahlman says:

        But he was working for Andy Palmer until March. Left him for Tesla. Now reverses the decision.

        1. kdawg says:

          Maybe that was all part of Andy’s plan to have him infiltrate Tesla, then report back.

          He did work in “communications”.

          😀

          1. Anon says:

            That’s an interesting point… Audi now has all kinds of insider info regarding Tesla’s products and timetables. Everything they need to ramp up and compete directly with them

            Good.

            1. Jesse Gurr says:

              I thought he went to Aston Martin, not Audi…

    2. DocDragon says:

      What glow? Elon is stealing the show, so I guess this must be quite frustrating to be a PR guy. LOL

    3. DaveMart says:

      If my view is correct then demand for the Model S runs at around 8,000 a quarter world wide.

      Since their lines are now capable of turning out 1,000 a week until Model X production starts in earnest there is a very nasty gap to explain away, when the company meme is that they are only production, not demand, limited.

      Perhaps he did not fancy that, especially when he has a CEO who makes new announcements and so on every week.

      We will see, and if they do sell 1,000 Model S cars a week I will be the first to say:
      ‘Good job!’

      They need Model X production right now, and they are not even at the prototype stage.

      1. Big Solar says:

        worried to death about that demand/production thing arent ya.

        1. DaveMart says:

          If you want to produce cars it sure helps to stay solvent.

          Production lines running at 50% capacity aren’t conducive to that.

          1. kdawg says:

            “If my view is correct then demand for the Model S runs at around 8,000 a quarter world wide.”
            ————-

            I don’t think this view is correct. There are still waiting lists. And each Tesla sold has a snowball effect. Elon has stated that when a Tesla is sold in a new area, that 10 new sales can follow from that area.

            And what’s going to happen when the X hits? Big market for SUVs.

            1. Big Solar says:

              and they haven’t even started “real” advertising yet. amazing the things people conviently forget. (not you kdawg)

            2. DaveMart says:

              There is no sign that waiting lists in the US, the only mature market, are growing, and growing waiting lists would be the only thing that could provide more than a one off bump in the figures.

              There is also no sign on the figures, which is what I look at, of the snowball effect.

              I have not commented about Model X sales, and specifically said that the problems of overcapacity currently were until the Model X reaches full production.

              I’d put the combined demand for the Model S and Model X in the 13-15,000 a quarter combined, and of course with a 21,000 order book then once production of the Model X starts then there will be production constraints for some time.
              We won’t have a proper handle on it until Model X production and sales are well underway.

              So it is the period up to when the Model X gets into full scale production which is the bit I am talking about here.

              1. Big Solar says:

                “There is no sign that waiting lists in the US, the only mature market, are growing, and growing waiting lists would be the only thing that could provide more than a one off bump in the figures.”

                Not true.

              2. Tech01x says:

                Keeping it light

                1. Chris O says:

                  It’s more like chrystal ball gazing and seeing what one wants to see: hydrogen will be big and Tesla is going nowhere.

                  Of course Tesla would have to go nowhere in order for the hydrogen narrative to be taken even remotely seriously so it’s all pretty predictable.

                  1. kdawg says:

                    Dave M: “There is no sign that waiting lists in the US, the only mature market, are growing, and growing waiting lists would be the only thing that could provide more than a one off bump in the figures.”
                    ————–

                    First, where are the signs they are not growing? What data do you have? Second, the fact that there are waiting lists proves we haven’t seen what kind of demand there is. Many people will not buy a car they have to wait 3 months to recieve. Regarding the snowball effect, until you go back an look at the history of this map, or get data directly from Telsa to refute Elon’s comments, your opinion is pointless. https://www.zeemaps.com/map?group=295135

                    1. DaveMart says:

                      @kdawg:
                      I was informed by Tesla fans that the current waiting time in the US is three months.

                      Since Tesla tells us that they build to order, the time waiting time can hardly be zero.

                      In fact when I did a spot check on the waits in the Tesla forum for the US over a period of time, they were all over the shop, with extended waits of ~3 months dropping back to one month, then extending again.

                      Since we have a run of quarterly figures extending back around 18 months on this forum, see the link at the head of the page, it is impossible that there is some great mass of unfilled orders waiting for the US.

                      The quarterly figures for the US which I have posted here from the monthly figures detail linked in yellow at the top are after an initial surge in one quarter consistently under 4,000 for the US.

                      Europe? Lets not be silly.
                      Latest figures from their great bright spot, Norway, are 104 for September, whilst the UK is estimated at 150 in this, one of our two highest sales months of the year:
                      http://ev-sales.blogspot.co.uk/2014_03_01_archive.html
                      (see October figures for September)

                      China?
                      Bloomberg put deliveries over the last 5 months at 2500, for 500 a month, and proudly announced 4,000 orders with, and this is the crunch, deliveries out to 6 months.

                      So that is 4,000/6 = 750 per month, or 2000 a quarter.

                      So:
                      US 4,000
                      Europe 2,000
                      China 2,000

                      Total 8,000, give or take some fooling around about waiting lists.

      2. Chris O says:

        “We will see, and if they do sell 1,000 Model S cars a week I will be the first to say:
        ‘Good job!”…no you won’t.

        Tesla is the biggest argument against the hydrogen agenda you try promote on this forum so it is in your interest to always portray it in the worst possible light.

        Hence the broken record routine.

        1. Big Solar says:

          nail on the head.

        2. Chris O says:

          ….also Tesla had already announced 2000 less car produced in Q3 due to transition to larger production capacity so that would fit the sales numbers you think you can predict.

          1000/week production was never scheduled for Q3, that was always supposed to start in Q4.

          You keep clutching at those straws, but the rest of us aren’t too worried about Tesla staying solvent.

          1. Rick Danger says:

            What DaveMart fails to understand, and why his ship has already sunk, is the fact that Elon Musk isn’t saying Fool Cells are BS because he makes BEVs – he makes BEVs because Fool Cells are BS. As to the argument that “all those Toyota engineers can’t be wrong” – Toyota engineers are hired geeks. They work on what they’re told to work on. Elon isn’t saddled with disadvantage.

            1. DaveMart says:

              I am perfectly prepared to discuss the utterly different subject of fuel cells on a suitable thread, which this is not.

              In the meantime you might be advised to avoid confusing sales slogans and knocking copy with analysis.

              1. Rick Danger says:

                Now you think you can advise me on what I should do? Not too pompous, are you?

  3. Anon says:

    That didn’t last long…

  4. Chris O says:

    Communications for Aston Martin sounds like a lot less challenging job than communications for a company that’s continually under intense scrutiny like Tesla. Maybe there was a mismatch between Tesla’s communication needs and what Mr. Sproule had on offer? The fact that Eric love day seems to complain about a lack of proper communication could be indicative of that.

    1. Anton Wahlman says:

      He didn’t figure that out before he left Nissan and moved to the other side of the planet?

  5. hector says:

    Is it just me or anybody else is smelling a full electric Aston Martin?

    1. Big Solar says:

      thats what I was thinking or at least a EREV/PHEV

      1. Jesse Gurr says:

        Maybe Tesla powered Aston Martin?

    2. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      Nope, but a 50kW EREV saloon would be a Rolls-killer.

      1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        Err 50kWH

    3. Anton Wahlman says:

      One way or the other, I think you’re up to something there. It’s just a matter of time. Still, one wonders why 6-7 months were enough for him working for the pure EV maker.

    4. pjwood says:

      Far be it for “form follows function” to exist in cars, these days, but yes, electric-drive with REx support.

      I hear those electric cars are smooth?

  6. Mikael says:

    “The only downside for Sproule in this move is that he’ll have to leave Palo Alto, California behind him, as his ventures take him back to England.”

    Strange comment. I would have considered that one of the upsides.

      1. Josh says:

        lol

        (Glad to see you are also a Weather Underground fan)

    1. JRMW says:

      In the end, it’s difficult to compare Palo Alto and London.

      London is almost always ranked as one of the top two cities on Earth. (NY and London, although I also throw Paris in there)

      San Francisco is an amazing city. But it’s no London or NY or Paris. It’s on par with other amazing cities like Boston, Barcelona, Amsterdam, and so on.

      But Palo Alto isn’t even San Francisco. Palo Alto is a suburb. A nice suburb. But a Suburb. And 35-40+ minutes to the city without traffic.

      I would move from Palo Alto to London in a heartbeat. My brother/sister in law moved from SF to NYC and now live in Palo Alto, and although they liked the massive slowdown in life that came with going back to SF/Palo Alto, they miss the life of NYC.

      Disclosure: born and raised San Franciscan who has lived all over including Paris, LA, SD, Atlanta, Houston, Seattle, Chicago and now the megalopolis of Minneapolis. I would consider moving to SF, but would never in 1 million years consider moving to Palo Alto unless the job came with a helicopter to help me commute from SF.

      My guess is that he got to Tesla and realized there isn’t much for him to do, or the job wasn’t right, so he moved back with a known entity to get his career back on track… and like millions of people wasn’t sad to move to London.

      1. Josh says:

        Houston didn’t make your top cities in the world list, j/k.