Google's autonomous car project appears to be making a big leap forward in development. According to Recode, the autonomous car division is hiring executive level employees as it readies itself for a split from Alphabet X and into its own autonomous division. This means moving away from a reliance on Alphabet X for direction, regulation, and expansion.

Alphabet X, the research and development arm that focuses on so-called "moonshot" projects, has overseen the self-driving car project to this point. The division was previously called Google X, but Google was restructured several years back and reformed into Alphabet Inc, with Google acting as a subsidiary along side projects like Google Fiber and Nest Labs.

In an interview in October, the self-driving car project leader John Krafcik said the division will be moving out from under Alphabet X and into it's own autonomous division. Krafcik, former CEO of Hyundai, has been in charge of the project since September 2015.

The self-driving car project is hiring executives for positions that are currently held by Alphabet X executives. This includes a chief legal officer and a head of real estate. That latter may mean that the group is looking for its own separate work space outside of the current Google campus. The job posting said that the project expects to grow significantly, in both physical size and manpower.

We reported back in February that the group was looking at locations in Michigan to set up shop. The group already has teams set up in Mountain View, Calif., Austin, Texas, Kirkland, Wash., and Phoenix, Ariz.

The job posting also says that the project wants to leverage typical Google workspace, amenities, and culture in order to attract talent. With more and more companies jumping into the autonomous car business, there has been a lot of talent poaching. Retaining a strong and consistent workforce is key in bringing autonomous vehicles to the streets.

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