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#655 of 674 Is He Making The Grade?
Dec 28, 2007 (1:14 am)
The '08 CTS, Malibu, and Corvette suggest that he is.
#656 of 674 Don't mind me
Mar 20, 2008 (9:53 am)
Just bringing the topic back to the top to see what happens.
In my book there's no longer any doubt that ol' Bob is doing what they brought him in to do. The only question is if they did it in time and I'm beginning to think the answer is yes.
#657 of 674 Re: Don't mind me [fezo]
Mar 20, 2008 (12:30 pm)
3 years earlier would have been even better Coulda made sure the LaCrosse and Lucerne were a bit more styled. Both have high quality interiors but a bit understated.
Also could have had better interiors in the Solstice. While it was the first car he really could do something with he had not "kicked" the GM "system" into a different mode of acting.
#658 of 674 Re: Don't mind me [62vetteefp]
Mar 20, 2008 (12:49 pm)
You don't hear this from me very often but I agree with you word for word.
Feb 09, 2009 (2:25 pm)
From today's Automotive News...
"DETROIT -- Bob Lutz, the former Chrysler Corp. president who was hired at age 69 to lead a product renaissance at General Motors, is retiring at the end of the year.
Lutz, 76, is GM's vice chairman of global product development. In a statement, the company said Lutz will become vice chairman and senior adviser April 1. Lutz will continue to report to CEO Rick Wagoner...
GM said its global powertrain chief, Tom Stephens, will replace Lutz as vice chairman of global product development. Stephens, 60, will report to COO Fritz Henderson. Stephens is currently executive vice president of global powertrain and global quality. In his new assignment, Stephens will maintain responsibility for global quality..."
Lutz, who turns 77 on Thursday, Feb. 12.
For purposes of this discussion, then, the question now becomes, did Bob Lutz make the grade? I'd say that although GM would have almost certainly had to file for bankruptcy without the recent government "loan," that Bob Lutz did about as well as anyone could have been expected to do under the circumstances. The headwinds he faced included a stubbornly embedded corporate culture that strongly resisted change; the UAW, which is also highly resistant to change; a relatively limited budget, due to GM's weakened financial condition; too many brands, given GM's reduced market share; damaged brands, as Lutz eloquently once referred to Buick and Pontiac; and a bloated dealer network that's protected by state laws.
Did he do everything brilliantly? Well, even if he did a good job overall, which I beleive he did, that would be an exaggeration. For example, he held up introduction of the LaCrosse, which was the replacement for the Century and Regal, for about a year, because he didn't like the design. He ordered modifications to the design which was developed before he arrived at GM, but the current LaCrosse has never sold well. Another example is that, until about a year ago, he didn't believe in the viability of hybrids. Eventually, he became a strong backer for the Volt, but did his influence delay hybrid development within GM?
By the way, I saw the redesigned 2010 LaCrosse at the Washington Auto Show, and it looks very sharp. I think it has what it takes to succeed in its segment, if potential customers will even bother to consider a Buick again.
#660 of 674 How to Save GM easily
Feb 22, 2009 (7:50 pm)
GM should take Vauxhall,Opel, and Saturn and consolidate the three different divisions. they should all sell the same product under the same brand name in different markets. Opel should become the surviving moniker/brand and the cost of the different brands is dramatically slashed.
This same principle should be applied to Chevrolet and GMC, they both sell the same product lines to similar core demographics but have different brands and dealership networks. Chevrolet and GMC should merge with Chevrolet being the surviving franchise.
Hummer and SAAB should be grouped together and sold to am emerging automaker looking for a foothold in several markets. With a little investment both Hummer and SAAB can become showpeice brands.
I personally would save Pontiac as its lineup does not overlap and caters to a sportier segment than any of GM'S other brands. I would keep Pontiac at least for the midterm and consider taking the brand international if GM's fortunes improve, if the company still didnt reach profitability the brand most likely would have to be axed.
The above suggestions would cost way less than discontinuing a brand, that would involve dealer lawsuits and hefty costs of anywhere to $2-$3 billion as seen when oldsmobile was discontinued in the late 90's.
Consolidating Saturn/Vauxhall/ Opel into just the Opel Brand
Merging Chevrolet/GMC into Chevrolet
7 brands will be whittled down to two brands. clearer marketing and definition can be discovered and synergies will arise. the company will be on a solid footing with a more manageable company, poised for future growth. If this plan is not followed and GM decides to close brands and severely mismanage their divestment we might not see the company survive another three years.
#661 of 674 Lutz asked To Defer Retirement
Jul 10, 2009 (5:03 am)
Although Bob Lutz had announced his retirement for the end of this year, apparently he has bee asked to stay longer, to help with GM's emergence from bankruptcy. This should answer the question of whether he's made the grade.
#662 of 674 Re: Lutz asked To Defer Retirement [hpmctorque]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Jul 10, 2009 (6:39 am)
"General Motors' Bob Lutz will stay on with the new version of the automaker as head of not only product development but also GM's brands, marketing, advertising and communications."
Lutz Stays On With New GM; Heads All Things Creative (AutoObserver)
Heads All Things Creative - guess that means he'll be handling the financing too.
#663 of 674 Is He, Did He and Now Will He Make the Grade?
Jul 22, 2009 (9:57 am)
Well, the rebirth of slick isn't going too well. Right after the announcement of being back, Bob took to the 'ol foot in the mouth approach by announcing the G8 will live on as the Caprice. This actually was a good idea, too bad he wasn't on the same page as Henderson and the rest of "new" GM as they're killing the car all together or perhaps sell the car to police departments as such, again IF they decide to keep it around after Poncho's last bow. One thing for sure, he will be good for quotes. I do think he is wearing too many hats and will be stretched to lean to have any real impact - need to concentrate on one area, two max, and groom people to take over, kind of like Harley Earl grooming Bill Mitchell with a Larry Shinoda in the wings.
I would have thought Lutz would've tried to get his stalled auto company off the ground again.
Aug 17, 2009 (2:22 pm)
From everything I have read about him, Lutz is the last of the great car guys. He calls it by his gut feeling, which has been mostly spot-on. G8? Look at what used Australian GTO's still sell for--Lutz was if anything ahead of his time. Unfortunately every car in the future will be designed by a commitee, and only with government-motors approval.