Lido Anthony “Lee” Iacocca was an American automobile executive best known for the development of Ford Mustang and Pinto cars, while at the Ford Motor Company in the 1960s, and then later for reviving the Chrysler Corporation as its CEO during the 1980s.
In his 32-year career at Ford and then Chrysler, Iacocca launched some of Detroit’s best-selling and most significant vehicles including the Mustang, the Ford Escort, the Chrysler Minivan and Chrysler K-cars.
He was the only auto executive to have led two of Detroit’s Big Three automakers.
In his 32-year career at Ford and then Chrysler, Iacocca helped launch some of Detroit’s best-selling and most significant vehicles, including the minivan, the Chrysler K-cars and the Ford Escort. He also spoke out against what he considered unfair trade practices by Japanese automakers.
The son of Italian immigrants, Iacocca reached a level of celebrity matched by few auto moguls. During the peak of his popularity in the ’80s, he was famous for his TV ads and catchy tagline: “If you can find a better car, buy it!” He wrote two best-selling books and was courted as a presidential candidate.
But he will be best remembered as the blunt-talking, cigar-chomping Chrysler chief who helped engineer a great corporate turnaround.
Robert D. McFadden, “Lee Iacocca, Visionary Automaker Who Led Both Ford and Chrysler, Is Dead at 94“, New York Times, July 2, 2019.