Lee Iacocca, the former chairman and CEO of Chrysler Corp. whose name is synonymous with the Auburn Hills carmaker, wants Italian management to know he approves of the new Chrysler Group LLC.
Iacocca’s endorsement prompted him to become honorary chairman of the National Chrysler Retirement Association and to co-author a welcome letter to Sergio Marchionne, the Fiat SpA CEO who is now running Chrysler as well.
In a full-page ad in today’s Detroit News, Iacocca joins about 19,000 Chrysler retirees in offering their assistance as advisers “in any capacity that you might require. As a first step, we would be willing to meet with the Chrysler human resources team to determine where help is needed and to identify historically top-producing volunteers to assist you. Just put us to work.”
The letter notes “there are still some exceptions that we hope will be reevaluated,” a veiled reference to the fact that some retirement plans, including Iacocca’s unsecured supplemental executive retirement plan, are among the bad assets with the bankrupt Chrysler.