Fisker Automotive may not have the presence or footprint of a Detroit Three automaker, but that isn’t stopping it from recruiting former D3 employees. Case in point: Fisker just announced it appointed former Chrysler CEO Tom LaSorda as vice chairman of the board.
LaSorda will be reporting to Fisker Automotive CEO Henrik Fisker at an interesting time for the company. Karma models still haven’t hit the streets quite yet, but the nameplate is gaining panache thanks to awards like BBC Top Gear Magazine’s Luxury Car of the Year and Automobile’s very own Design of the Year. Conversely, it was also dealt a bit of a PR setback when test figures from the Environmental Protection Agency fell a bit short of expectations.
Needless to say, Fisker’s got its work ahead of it as it tries to make a dent in the luxury car market with the plug-in Karma and Surf models and launch its more-affordable, U.S.-built Nina.
LaSorda is familiar with heading companies with uphill battles, too: he was CEO of the Chrysler Group for a brief time between 2006 and 2007, succeeding Dieter Zetsche and followed by Robert Nardelli. He also worked at General Motors for roughly 23 years between 1977 and 2000.
LaSorda’s most famous act of recent history is one of Chrysler’s most important -- he is credited with helping organize and facilitate the sale of Chrysler to Fiat. Seeing as the Fiat/Chrysler partnership has breathed new life into the American automaker, it should help bolster his resume.
According to Fisker, LaSorda will chair the board’s Strategy Council and serve as “an executive advisor to the management team.”