[DML] Historic Vehicle Association eNews - April 2013
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[DML] Historic Vehicle Association eNews - April 2013

Thought everyone would be interested in this short article on John DeLorean

DeLorean Cocaine Scandal

Growing up in Detroit in the 1930s, John DeLorean, by his own account, was so poor that he only owned one suit from the age of 12 until he graduated from Lawrence Institute of Technology with a degree in industrial engineering.

DeLorean served three years in the army during World War II. He returned home and got a part-time job working at Chrysler, which also afforded him the opportunity to take post-graduate studies at the Chrysler Institute of Design.

With a good education and a reputation for challenging the status quo, DeLorean landed jobs with Packard Motor Co., Chevrolet and GM and made valuable contributions to each company. He is especially well-known for developing the revolutionary Pontiac GTO, as well as for his work on the Firebird and Grand Prix.

DeLorean was on track to become president of GM, but in a move that surprised the American press and public, he left the company in 1973. He established the DeLorean Motor Company in 1975, becoming the first American in 50 years to start a new auto company from scratch. The following year, the prototype of DeLorean’s masterpiece—the futuristic DMC-12—arrived on the scene.

Although the DMC-12 was surrounded by hype, sales were unsuccessful and the company fell into financial difficulty. It was around this time that DeLorean received a call from James Hoffman, an FBI informant posing as a drug smuggler. Hoffman invited DeLorean to invest in a cocaine-smuggling scheme, assuring him that it would produce enough profits to save his floundering company. Lengthy negotiations and threats from “investors” ensued. When DeLorean finally agreed to finance the deal, the U.S. government charged him with trafficking in cocaine.

During a lengthy court case, DeLorean’s lawyers proved that he was entrapped by federal investigators, and he was acquitted. But his reputation never recovered. He lost friends and his auto company ultimately failed due to numerous suits related to fraud, bankruptcy and the legality of the money he had used to finance the DMC-12.

DeLorean remained positive despite these unwelcome changes. “I honestly believe the best part of my life is still ahead of me,” he said in 1986. Although DeLorean never introduced another car before his death in 2005, his contributions to the automotive world have proved to be unforgettable.

Link: http://view.news.historicvehicle.org/?j=fefe1076716605&m=fea213707567047e75&ls=fe6715707664077b7210&l=ff971c70&s=fe9916737562007c73&jb=ffcf14&ju=fec51c7377670675&r=0

Bob Cutrupi

Sent from my iPad

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


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