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The government's stopping GM from re-hiring Bob Lutz

Illustration for article titled The governments stopping GM from re-hiring Bob Lutz

Former General Motors product czar "Maximum" Bob Lutz left the company last year, but new GM CEO Dan Akerson's been trying to get him back. The only thing standing in his way according to The Daily Beast is the U.S. Treasury Department, which fears the move could be perceived as a golden parachute.

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The U.S. Treasury has opposed Lutz's appointment on the grounds that, since he left the company last May, paying him so close to his retirement could look like a sweetheart payout. The government could soften its opposition in three months, once a year has passed since Lutz's retirement. If an agreement is reached with Lutz, GM would gain access to his considerable experience developing vehicles. In any event, the U.S., which owns a third of GM, aims to sell its shares as soon as possible, which would remove GM from the government's purview.

Since May various GM executives, including Akerson, have been calling Lutz to pick his brain. Should he return, perhaps devoting a day a week to the automaker, he could be helpful in product development, as well as design and marketing.

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Lutz is currently advising Lotus, but as the man behind almost all of the GM products enthusiasts love, it seems like a nice fit. Maybe someone should remind the bureaucrats at the Treasury it's a good thing when GM builds cars people want.

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DISCUSSION

turd ferguson

As much as I admire Maximum Bob's car-guy spirit, and I acknowledge that he has been the driving force behind some of GM's more fun to drive products, he wasn't exactly GM's savior now, was he? I know it's akin to heresy among Jalops to criticize Lutz, but I'm not so sure that bringing him back would be a smart move.