Seoul– Hyundai Motor Group said on Tuesday it has hired a former Porsche engineer who led the development of the luxury sports car brand’s first electric vehicle (EV), Taycan, as it strives to further improve its vehicles’ performance.

The South Korean carmaker has appointed Manfred Harrer as executive vice president and head of the newly established Genesis & Performance Development Tech Unit, the group said in a statement.

The unit operates under the Research and Development (R&D) division of Hyundai Motor and Kia, two key affiliates of the automotive group. Harrer reports to Yang Heui-won, president of the Hyundai-Kia R&D Division, it said.

Harrer, 51, has worked on diverse projects, including chassis development, electronic systems, and software development, at leading carmakers such as Audi AG, BMW Group, and Porsche AG in the past 25 years, reports Yonhap news agency.

He also previously worked at Apple as senior director of product design engineering.

The group expects his expertise and leadership capabilities to expedite its electrification transition, securing top-tier leadership in the upcoming EV era and enhancing the marketability of Hyundai Motor and Kia’s products.

Harrer said he is dedicated to playing a pivotal role in the future evolution of luxury Genesis models as well as Hyundai and Kia’s high-performance vehicles. (IANS)