Detroit, Michigan – Bob Lutz, vice-chairman of General Motors, has announced he will retire on May 1, 2010, after a 47-year career in the global auto industry that included senior leadership positions at four of the world’s leading automakers.
Lutz, 78, rejoined GM on September 1, 2001 as the head of product development. He has also worked at BMW, Chrysler and Ford.
“The influence Bob Lutz has had on GM’s commitment to design, build and sell the world’s best vehicles will last for years to come,” said Ed Whitacre, GM CEO and chairman. “I, along with many other men and women in GM and throughout the industry, have greatly benefited from his passion, wisdom and guidance.”
Lutz said his decision was partly because the growing strength of GM’s four brands prove that a product-focused mindset inside the company is in place for the long term.
“I can confidently say that the job I came here to do more than nine years ago is now complete,” Lutz said. “The team I have been fortunate to lead has far exceeded my expectations. Our product lineup is as strong as it has been in GM’s history. The perception of our products and brands is beginning to catch up with reality. And most importantly, the absolute commitment to being a product-driven company is ingrained throughout the organization, from the top down, and I am confident that, under Ed Whitacre’s leadership, the straightforward, singular focus on product will endure.”