In January, the Los Angeles auto show will feature a competition among California auto design studios to create a concept vehicle depicting "an L.A. Adventure." General Motors' concept, the GMC Pad, is a traveling living room developed for on-the-road living in quirky Southern California. It features satellite TV and radio and wireless Internet. Maybach's Gourmet Tourer features an espresso machine, microwave, wine rack and food preparation area.
BEEN THERE, DONE THAT -- Delphi Corp. CEO Steve Miller may not have a lot of friends in the rank and file, but former Chrysler Corp. Chairman Lee Iacocca is a big fan. In an interview with the Associated Press last week, Iacocca praised Miller for cutting his $1.5 million annual salary to $1 while Delphi is in Chapter 11. "To hell with these big bonuses and compensation packages until you get the company turned around," said Iacocca, Miller's former boss. In 1979, when Chrysler was in trouble, Iacocca took a voluntary pay cut from more than $300,000 a year to $1. The two men have another thing in common: Neither had to switch to the economy brand of hot dogs after the pay cut. Iacocca still was able to collect $1.5 million compensation for benefits lost after he was fired from his former job at Ford Motor Co. And Miller is hanging onto his $3 million Delphi signing bonus.
MOVIN' ON UP -- Anne Stevens once again has made the Fortune list of the 50 most powerful women in business -- and is rising up the ladder. She is the only woman on the list from the auto industry. Fortune ranked Stevens No. 22, up from No 49 last year. Stevens, 49, is COO of the Americas for Ford Motor Co. In September Automotive News named Stevens to its list of 100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry. Also making the Fortune list was Shelly Lazarus, 58, CEO of advertising titan Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, whose clients include Ford and Volvo. She was ranked No. 26, the same as in 2004.
LIFE IN THE FAST LANE -- It goes really fast, but will the well-heeled pay a premium? That's the question Porsche Cars North America Inc. wants answered with the $440,000 Carrera GT it has donated for auction. But this is no ordinary Carrera. In September, racer David Donohue set a record production car speed of 196.301 mph at the Talladega Speedway in the car. And comedian Jay Leno set two other speed records with the car. Porsche donated the car for an auction this week to help children affected by hurricanes Katrina and Rita.