By on July 19, 2012

Former Wall Street banker turned GM CFO Dan Ammann put the fear of a higher being into Reuters’ Detroit correspondent Ben Klayman. To drive home the point that bean counters can be car guys too, Ammann raced his gray-metallic Corvette Z06 around GM’s Michigan test track – with a nauseated Klayman in the passenger’s seat.

“I almost threw up afterwards,” recounts Klayman. Klayman’s feature story about the CFO who wants it understood that he’s not one of the gray-suited “bean counters” who once dominated, and nearly destroyed, General Motors, is required reading.

And as long as he won’t throw up in the car, no harm done.

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22 Comments on “GM CFO Makes Reuters Correspondent Want To Throw Up...”


  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Nice try Mr. CFO, the Corvette is probably one of few, if not the only product they haven’t bean counted to death in more recent decades.

    Try the same trick driving him around in one of your crappy LS model Korean Chevys… Yeah that’s what I thought.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      The Corvette does have some of the worst seats in the industry. Everyone has pointed it out from the first preview of the C6, but GM has released a Porsche-esque variety of new trim levels and engines without addressing this central failing of the car. They’re sick.

  • avatar
    THE_F0nz

    From my understanding, the bean counters that kept them from getting new seats. New seats would have cost them a great deal of money in order to re-crash test the car. You are right on the money.

  • avatar
    Mrb00st

    Corvette got new seats for 2012.

    Welcome to the internet, where we throw rocks before we check facts.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      The C6 was introduced as a 2005 model and will soon be replaced. Chevrolet says the seats are improved. It wasn’t easy to find a 2012 review of a car in production for so long, but I did:

      Evans, meanwhile, had a nice long ride east to contemplate the Corvette’s less-than-stellar cockpit. “I understand that redesigning the interior is prohibitively expensive on a low-volume car, but I refuse to believe it’s too expensive to wrap the dash in something that does a better leather impression than old garbage bags. And really, DVD-based navigation? At least pull a newer unit out of one of your other models. I don’t want to talk about the blue-tinted Lexan roof. Or the Cobalt steering wheel. The head-up display looks state-of-1988 — because it is. It was neat when no one else had it, but today we have full-color, hi-res HUDs. The Corvette’s system looks like an antique.” I promised a friend I wouldn’t use it, so I’m going to omit the paragraph Scott wrote about how awful the Grand Sport’s seats are. But I will point out that the Corvette is the only vehicle in the world sporting fake carbon fiber on top of fake leather. Still.

      Read more: http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/coupes/1204_2012_chevrolet_corvette_grand_sport_coupe_vs_2012_porsche_911_carrera_s_comparison/viewall.html#ixzz215d5tHG4

      Seats still awful. Oh well.

  • avatar
    gmichaelj

    I suppose if you are the one driving and anticipating the g-forces it’s easier to take – but maybe not. Maybe the guy from GM is a real tough guy. Or maybe the Reuters guy is happy to praise the bean counter.

    • 0 avatar
      rushn

      It’s always easier being the driver than the passenger. There is a multitude of videos on youtube showcasing just that, even with experienced drivers as passengers. The same is true even for bicycles, just to put it in the frame of reference you are used to :)

  • avatar
    el scotto

    They should get all GM executive above a certain rank high speed certified. Stick their butts in the car they’re backing and have them drive the competition too. Yeah, some real world honesty for the corner office guys/gals. Does GM still have a parking garage where the executives cars are gassed, washed, repaired as needed?

  • avatar
    Eyeflyistheeye

    Ammann could have gotten the same outcome of unstoppable nausea from Klaymann if he would have locked him in a 2013 Malibu for ten minutes.

    Wocka, wocka, wocka!

  • avatar
    icemilkcoffee

    I would be more impressed if he had worked on his own car as well as driving it.

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      I’m breaking serious Man Law here. I can change my oil and replace my brake pads and that’s about it; oh and an air filter. I don’t really enjoy doing oil changes or brakes. My mechanic does those for a living, along with other auto repairs. He’s faster at them than I am and has the accrued knowledge of thousands of brake jobs and oil changes.

  • avatar
    NotFast

    Did all you rock throwers notice the seats in the pic above aren’t stock? Looks like Sparco race seats.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      Seats that aren’t good enough for GM’s CFO shouldn’t be good enough for the customers, especially not in GM’s flagship product.

      • 0 avatar
        NormSV650

        CJ has never been on a race track before. High speed autocross? Not talking onramp lateral loads either.

        If you have then you would understand the asset of having backside contact with the car’s movements through an aftermarket seat.

      • 0 avatar

        @Norm – tell me, norm, why is it that you can get perfectly trackable recaros in a 3.7l ford mustang, but you can’t get them in a ZR1 corvette? that is the point entirely. while the watered down recaros in the mustang aren’t as good as what you can get from the aftermarket, they are certainly track worthy and MUCH better than the garbage in the corvette.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        I’ve been around Laguna Seca, Buttonwillow and Infineon in just the last year. The original equipment seats in various BMWs, Hondas, Mazdas, and Porsches have been up to the task.

        Forgot one: The seat in an old PT Cruiser was also supportive enough around Buttonwillow for the capabilities of the car. It probably wouldn’t have been an improvement on the Corvette seat, but then a retro econobox isn’t a powerful sports car.


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