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When Bob "crock of s*!t" Lutz first announced his retirement from General Motors a little over a year ago, he said he would not be around to see development of the Chevrolet Volt. Of course, he returned to the company before he ever really left (becoming vice chairman last December) and kept on strongly promoting the plug-in hybrid. Sometimes, of course, he continued his habit of saying things that attract a lot of attention, like that hybrids won't ever be that great for GM.
As General Motors was stumbling toward insolvency earlier this year and it became clear that the presidential task force was going to require some heads to roll, Bob Lutz announced his retirement at the end of this year. Now that the "New" General Motors has emerged from bankruptcy, it appears Lutz wants to keep his commitment to drive the first production Chevy Volt off the line in 2010.
Automotive journalists the world over are saddened and General Motors communications staff are breathing a sigh of relief today: Bob Lutz is retiring. For journalists, the loss of perhaps the most quotable executive since Hank the Duece means they will have to dig a little harder for stories. For the PR staff, it means a little less scrambling to spin the story whenever Lutz goes off script. Lutz has been Vice Chairman for Global Product Development at GM since 2001. Over his 45-year automotive
Shucks, things are bound to be a heck of a lot less interesting without Bob Lutz around. According to General Motors, the automaker's own Car Czar will transition from his current role as Vice Chairman – Global Product Development to the position of Vice Chairman and Senior Advisor on April 1 and officially retire at the end of the year. The automotive world is sure to be a quieter place.