Bob Lutz is not someone that keeps his opinions to himself. And he shouldn't be, at least when it comes to fighter jets and cars. The retired USMC aviator enjoyed a long, prosperous career serving automakers on both sides of the Atlantic. Now, Lutz has weighed in on Volkswagen's diesel emissions disaster in a column at Road and Track.

In a scathing takedown of former Volkswagen Executive Chairman Ferdinand Piëch, Lutz takes aim at his tyrannical leadership style, blaming it for the current mess the company finds itself in. Calling Piëch's leadership style a "reign of terror ... where performance was driven by fear and intimidation," Lutz paints a picture of a ruthless leader who workers would do anything to please. That, apparently, includes breaking the rules.

"I imagine that at some point, the VW engineering team said to Piëch, 'We don't know how to pass the emissions test with the hardware we have,'" Lutz wrote. "The reply, in that culture, most likely was, 'You will pass! I demand it! Or I'll find someone who can do it!'"

Lutz's column is worth a read, not only because of his many insights on the Volkswagen situation, but because of his views on leadership and how it led to this mess. Head on over to R&T and give it a read.

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