Former Chrysler executives join the board of ALTe

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 29, 2010

ALTe, a startup supplier of hybrid-vehicle powertrains, will surely benefit from the experience of a couple of former Chrysler executives who have joined its board.

Tom LaSorda and Steven Landry said that ALTe's business concept is what attracted them to the company. Based in suburban Detroit, ALTe makes range-extended electric-vehicle powertrain systems used as retrofits to existing vehicle engines, converting them to operate as hybrids.

A battery-powered electric motor and gas-powered generator, similar to the Chevrolet Volt's powertrain, is attached to its vehicles.

ALTe's business model is to retrofit vehicle fleets. In only a few years, ALTe expects to generate up to $2 billion in annual revenue.

In a statement, LaSorda said that he decided to invest when he saw the "tremendous potential" as he read the business plan after having conducted the due diligence himself. LaSorda will serve as the board's "lead director."

LaSorda is known for having been Chrysler CEO in 2005 when it was owned by Daimler AG. He landed the co-president position in August 2007 after the automaker was acquired by Cerberus Capital Management.

LaSorda left Chrysler when it filed for bankruptcy protection on April 30. He then served as adviser to Penske Automotive Group in its bid to take over the Saturn brand from General Motors Co. however that bid failed as well.

Landry was previously connected with Chrysler as its executive vice president of North American sales, service and parts. On June 10, his retirement was announced just as Chrysler emerged from bankruptcy under the management of Fiat S.p.A.

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