10/04/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

GM's Lutz Asks For Break On Crash Tests To Focus On Fuel Efficiency

It's no secret that America's largest automakers -- General Motors, Ford Motor Company, and Chrysler -- are struggling. Weighted by the burden of a troublesome economy, and facing increasingly strict legislation on fuel economy, the future of the trio seems uncertain. Still, each has forged ahead with its efforts to produce hybrid vehicles, generally accepted to be the future of the auto industry.

None has put as much effort into the field, perhaps, as GM. GM has invested a great deal of money into the development and advertising of the all-electric Chevy Volt, to launch in November 2010 and the development of biofuels. However, despite its best efforts, GM remains concerned about the effects of CAFE (coporate average fuel economy) legislation.

General Motors Corp.'s vice chairman and product-development chief, Bob Lutz, is calling on the federal government to take an unusual step to ease pressure on automakers and allow them to focus on fuel economy -- suspend crash testing requirements. Mr. Lutz is particularly worried about, among other vehicles, the future of the fuel hungry Corvette.

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