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Bob Lutz returns to the car industry

Bob Lutz smiles as he returns to the automobile industry

(Keystone)

Swiss-born Bob Lutz, the former vice-chairman of Chrysler in the United States, is revving up to return to the car industry.

General Motors in Detroit has announced that the 69-year-old son of a Swiss banker will be responsible for product development from September 1.

Lutz worked at General Motors, BMW, and Ford before joining Chrysler in the mid-1980s under the chairmanship of the celebrated Lee Iacocca. His partnership with Bob Eaton at Chrysler is widely regarded as one of the most successful management teams, with the carmaker outshining most of its US and international competitors.

Unhappy because of a planned takeover by Daimler-Benz, Lutz left the car industry and in November 1998 took on the job of chief executive officer of the Exide battery company.

Commenting on his new job, Lutz said he was taking it because it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. "It is the opportunity to help in the ongoing rebuilding of not just an American icon, but a global icon," he said.

"I began my business career at General Motors back in the 1960s. In those days, GM cars and trucks set the standard throughout the world. I still have quite a bit of gasoline in my veins," he added.

Lutz is to continue his role as chairman of Exide.

swissinfo with agencies


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