By on December 2, 2009

And then there was one...

Fritz was and is an outstanding executive, and I’m very sorry to see him go. You can argue there never is a good time for any of this, but in this case, the timing is particularly inopportune… He guided General Motors through perhaps the most difficult period in its history. I think all of us were surprised and the whole General Motors team I think is genuinely saddened over what transpired

GM Marketing boss “Maximum” Bob Lutz eulogizes his erstwhile boss at the Los Angeles Auto Show [via DetN]. Historians of the Lutzian oeuvre should note that this quote represents MaxBob’s attempt at exercising “enormous skill in the non-answering of [Fritz-related] questions.”

While I wish the timing was different, I don’t think it will set us back. You can dwell on what happened, but that’s not the way I was trained as a Marine. It’s a distraction, but we’ll have a lot to talk about. The public buys cars, they don’t buy management teams.

Though Lutz apparently spoke at length about the Volt and electrification and other matters of great interest [full speech here], these triflings don’t seem to have generated any real media interest. Life after Fritz was the topic du jour, underlining Lutz’s point about the whole timing thing. And don’t worry, we’ll find out what really happened… someday. “You will have to wait until I publish my next book,” Lutz teased the crowd. “Presumably when I retire, possibly several years from now.”

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10 Comments on “Quote Of The Day: Maximum Eulogy Edition...”


  • avatar
    rpol35

    Does this mean that GM is no longer on the “Fritz”?

  • avatar
    John Horner

    Translation: “I had Rick and Fritz wrapped around my little finger to the point where they never considered holding me accountable for the disastrous projects I spearheaded like the Solstice/Sky, New GTO, G8 or any of my other “by the gut” missed calls.  But hey, this means extra sales of my upcoming World According to Lutz best-seller!”

  • avatar
    PickupMan

    “Presumably when I retire, possibly several years from now”
    <snort> Or possibly next week.  Ed’s style is zero tolerance for less than perfect results.
    Thousands at Pac Bell plus good ‘ol Fritz can testify to that, Bob.

  • avatar
    GS650G

    While I wish the timing was different, I don’t think it will set us back. You can dwell on what happened,
    Is it just me or is Maxi Bob comparing Fritz’s departure with tuning an engine? This could be brilliance in disguise as the text suggests.
    Perhaps what The Wise Fighter Pilot is suggesting is that GM needs to adjust the firing point of the management engine for best performance. If that is the case a few more spark plugs need to be replaced with hotter ones, a couple of intake leaks need to be plugged too, and the fuel injection rails need new seals.
    Maybe then we won’t need to use Premium Tax Dollars in the GM engine,  we can go back to regular money from investors.

  • avatar
    mtymsi

    In the picture only Larry’s left but he’s on his way to Europe, Moe and Curly got their well deserved  ziggies.
     
    I can’t believe some MSM auto people actually think Lutz should replace Henderson. I seriously need some of whatever they’re smoking.

  • avatar
    PeteMoran

    Errr… Is he challenging Whitarce’s authority??? Maybe he’ll be gone next week after those comments.
     
    The public buys cars, they don’t buy management teams.
     
    Really? That one is gold. The US public are the owners. I suspect they have a significant interest in the management team and couldn’t give a crap about the cars, which of course, is the KEY problem.

  • avatar
    texlovera

    Well, if we’re going to have a pilot run GM, I nominate Sully.  At least when he had to crash land his plane in the Hudson, everyone survived.  And he’s got a MUCH fasterr OODA loop: it only took him about 60 seconds to figure out his strategy; the current GM guys couldn’t figure it out in 60 months…

  • avatar
    buzz phillips

    The people who got GM into the mess won’t be the ones to get them out!

  • avatar
    panzerfaust

    “He guided GM through perhaps the most difficult period in its history.”  Some might say that the difficult period isn’t over yet, and therein lies the trouble with the current pack of GM executive fellow travellers.


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