Bob Lutz is staying very busy. The ex-vice chairman of General Motors, and champion of the Chevrolet Volt, has been named chairman of the board at Via Motors. Lutz will need to squeeze that in between his role as senior advisor at vehicle interior designer Katzkin, being an owner at VL Automotive and perhaps as an advisor to Wanxiang and Fisker Automotive.

Lutz thinks that Via's business plan of building extended range plug-ins is a smart way to go. "If we are going to see main stream adoption of electric vehicles, the technology must deliver a good return on investment to the largest segment of the auto business, namely trucks, vans and SUVs," Lutz said in a prepared statement, which you can read below. Lutz has decades of experience holding executive positions at some of the world's leading automakers and has spent the last few years working with green-focused start-ups.

Lutz will replace Carl Berg, who served as chairman since Via's launch in 2009 and will continue to be the company's largest stakeholder. As Via's new chairman, we figure Lutz will continue bragging about the trucks' bells and whistles – such as its built-in solar panels that can add 10 miles of range to the battery pack if it's parked in the sun all day.
Bob Lutz Appointed Chairman of the Board of VIA Motors

ANN ARBOR, MI– VIA Motors announced today that auto legend, Bob Lutz, former vice chairman of General Motors and a board member of VIA Motors, was appointed Chairman of the Board of VIA Motors, maker of extended range electric trucks, vans & SUVs. Lutz is also known as the "father of the Chevy Volt" America's best selling electric vehicle.

"VIA is fortunate to have the experience of one of the industry's foremost executives leading our board," said John Weber, VIA Motors, CEO. Mr. Lutz brings with him a passion for the evolution of the automobile, and decades of experience from his tenure in top executive positions at each of the world's leading auto companies, noted Weber.

"I believe VIA is electrifying the right end of the business and is implementing a very sound business strategy," said Lutz. "If we are going to see main stream adoption of electric vehicles, the technology must deliver a good return on investment to the largest segment of the auto business, namely trucks, vans & SUVs. That's why I am so confident in VIA and I'm pleased to serve as Chairman," said Lutz.

Lutz is replacing retiring chairman Carl Berg, who has served with distinction since VIA's launch in 2009. Berg continues to be VIA's largest shareholder and ardent supporter.

About Bob Lutz
Mr. Lutz' automotive career includes senior leadership positions at GM, Ford, Chrysler and BMW. Most recently, Mr. Lutz served as Vice Chairman of General Motors where he was instrumental in the production launch of the Chevy Volt. Lutz retired from GM in 2010.

About VIA Motors
VIA Motors is a privately held electric vehicle development and manufacturing company. VIA employs a streamlined second stage manufacturing process to integrate its proprietary V-DRIVE™ power train into new OEM vehicles, then sells directly to fleets under the VTRUX™ brand name. VIA VTRUX deliver up to 40-mile battery range and unlimited extended range, averaging over 100 mpg in typical daily driving. More information on VIA Motors may be found at: VIAmotors.com. Video with Bob Lutz: VIAmotors.com/erev. Online calculator to estimate savings: VIAmotors.com/payback


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 9 Comments
      Marc Hamady
      • 10 Hours Ago
      He did what he could when he was at GM, but at the time the bean counters there had way too much control over everything.
      Marco Polo
      • 10 Hours Ago
      I hope I'm as active and involved at 82 years old, as this remarkable legend.
        danfred311
        • 10 Hours Ago
        @Marco Polo
        He has lasted a long time but the problem is he has been a tool the whole time. There was never a time when he was any good. And it's certainly not now :) The dimwit still believes global warming is something Al Gore made up. He believes that oversized pickups is the way forward and he believes Fisker Karma would be a good car if only it got rid of the electric drive and had a V8.
          Marco Polo
          • 10 Hours Ago
          @danfred311
          @ danfred311 What do we do with you ? Time and time again, your spiteful nonsense gets you thoroughly detested. Escape from spreading bile on the internet, and get out in the real world ! Do something real for yourself, join an EV enthusiasts group, help build something, get some real friends. (or at least make contact), take your medication, and take part in a real life. You live in one of the most understanding, progressive, countries of the planet, get out of your room, and enjoy your life, before it slips away.
      CoolWaters
      • 10 Hours Ago
      That's great, but how are sales going? Is the product attractively priced?
        dmay
        • 10 Hours Ago
        @CoolWaters
        Don't know about the sales numbers, but for a company, it make a some sense to buy PHEV. Consider this: Lets say the truck starts at $70,000 and at 200,000 miles it loses 75% of it's value, for a loss of $52,000. Now this looks like a heck of a lot of money, and is, especially when you can say a similarly spec'ed $30,000 ICE truck will only lose ~$22,000. But then you are forgetting a big deal: tax deductions! A business can deduct mileage of the truck, and it's deducted the same regardless of whether the truck gets 5 mpg or 500 mpg. So, lets say that over the truck's 200,000 mile life, the average deduction is $0.58/mile. Formula: 200000 miles * ($.58 deducted /mile - 1 gallon of gas/(Vehicle MPG) * $3.50/gallon) - (Depreciated Cost) A regular truck that gets an average 22 mpg over 150,000 miles recovers ~$62,000 in deductions after gas and depreciated cost of the truck (@ $22,000 loss). A Via motors truck that gets the advertised 100 mpg recovers ~$57,000. So, between the two in this simple scenarios, there is a $5000 premium for Via Motors.
        • 10 Hours Ago
        @CoolWaters
        Don't know about the sales numbers, but for a company, it make a some sense to buy PHEV. Consider this: Lets say the truck starts at $70,000 and at 200,000 miles it loses 75% of it's value, for a loss of $52,000. Now this looks like a heck of a lot of money, and is, especially when you can say a similarly spec'ed $30,000 ICE truck will only lose ~$22,000. But then you are forgetting a big deal: tax deductions! A business can deduct mileage of the truck, and it's deducted the same regardless of whether the truck gets 5 mpg or 500 mpg. So, lets say that over the truck's 200,000 mile life, the average deduction is $0.58/mile. Formula: 200000 miles * ($.58 deducted /mile - 1 gallon of gas/(Vehicle MPG) * $3.50/gallon) - (Depreciated Cost) A regular truck that gets an average 22 mpg over 150,000 miles recovers ~$62,000 in deductions after gas and depreciated cost of the truck (@ $22,000 loss). A Via motors truck that gets the advertised 100 mpg recovers ~$57,000. So, between the two in this simple scenarios, there is a $5000 premium for Via Motors.
        dmay
        • 10 Hours Ago
        @CoolWaters
        Sorry about the triple reply. Gotta stop hitting submit.
          mustang_sallad
          • 10 Hours Ago
          @dmay
          thanks for the number crunching. The 15kW of export power that you get with the VIA truck would probably then make that extra $5000 worthwhile for most customers.