Lutz, a former fighter pilot and Chrysler engineer, was brought into GM to shake the product tree and did a pivotal job at a crucial time.
Much of his real work is still to be seen on the road.
But Australians can thank Lutz, a fan of the Commodore from the first time he saw one, for helping to forge the export deals for the Monaro and then the VE Commodore. Both went to the USA with Buick badges and the full support of Lutz.
GM says Lutz will become a 'senior advisor' on April 1 and will retire at the end of this year, when he will be 77.
He has been with GM since 2001 following time with Ford, BMW and Chrysler.
Lutz's duties have been handed to Tom Stephens, currently GM's global head of powertrain development and product quality. He is 60 and picks up the product portfolio from April 1.