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Bob Lutz Makes Triumphant Return To GM As "Senior Advisor"

By Blake Z. Rong | September 02, 2011
Bob Lutz just can't quit GM. After leaving the company as vice president in 2010, he’s now been rehired as a senior advisor, available to dispense pearls of wisdom to GM’s leadership. Lutz had left with extravagant fanfare in 2010, but since then he’s been informally providing advice and golf tips to executives. Now, however, he gets to do so in a more formal light. It seems that GM needed a “car guy” after all in its senior management, which must make for some fun conversations between Lutz and decidedly non-car-guy Dan Akerson, GM’s current CEO. Lutz’s business decisions at GM have been at times both influential (shaking up GM’s current styling across the board, building the Solstice and SSR) and self-defeating (bringing over the Saturn Astra that nobody bought, building the Solstice and SSR). Publications will often cite him as the closest executive to a “car guy” as they have, but his decisions are sometimes made for the interests of enthusiasts instead of accountants—he’s always championed attention-grabbing halo cars over volume sellers, with a seemingly begrudging attitude towards the latter. With his outspoken nature and “loose cannon” status, Lutz is a rare breed in the auto industry—never dull, sometimes outrageous, but always a polarizing figure. With Lutz’s decades of experience in the auto industry, plus his unabashed enthusiasm for exciting, sometimes impractical cars, it should make a keen contrast to Akerson’s business-minded pragmatism. Perhaps the two of them could form a comically mismatched-executive duo for the next great reality TV show: Lutz and Akerson, teaming up to keep the GM ship afloat!
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Joel A
Joel A

Bring back the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky!