Bob Lutz may be retired from the auto industry, but that doesn't mean he's content to go gentle into that good night. The outspoken 85-year-old former GM, BMW, Ford and Chrysler exec told a gathering of car collectors they should snatch up a Tesla Model S "while they're still available," adding to his long track record of predicting failure for the automotive insurgent.
Lutz made the comments during a forum at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale auction, the Los Angeles Times reports. "A Model S, especially with the performance upgrades, is one of the fastest, best-handling, best-braking sedans that you could buy in the world today. The acceleration times will beat any $350,000 European exotic," he said.
But he said Tesla is "perennially running out of cash" and added, "I don't see anything on the horizon that's gong to fix that, so those of you who are interested in collector cars, may I suggest buying a Tesla Model S while they're still available."
It's hardly the first time that Lutz has praised the Model S while throwing shade at Tesla. He called the company a "fringe" brand in 2014 and penned an editorial in Road & Track a year later in which he wrote "I think the Model S is a fabulous car, but history's filled with defunct companies with great products run by brilliant people." In 2016, he predicted — accurately as it turns out — that the Model 3 would be delayed (but who didn't, honestly?), and he compared Tesla supporters to cultists.
Tesla earlier this month said it aims to build around 2,500 Model 3s per week by the end of the first quarter, delaying production targets for a second time. Its shares were up around 1.5 percent in mid-day trading to $355.60.