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The Rise and Fall of John DeLorean

The Rise and Fall of John DeLorean Longreads Blog


The timeline of DeLorean’s personal history is so tied to the history of automobiles that, even after his death in 2005 (at age 80, after suffering complications from a stroke), his various supporters and detractors are still debating his accomplishments and foibles. Both lists are long. Some argue for the flashy and obvious, such as the DMC-12’s gull-wing doors and rust proof stainless steel body. Others point to a design accomplishment that is far more ubiquitous but rarely attributed to DeLorean: the lane-change turn signal.

Yes, that’s right: before DeLorean, drivers stuck their arms out the window to indicate a turn. DeLorean’s other innovations made major impacts as well, though the actual tally of those inventions and patents ranges from 3 to 200, depending on who you ask. Most agree that a short list would include a recessed windshield wiper, the overhead-cam engine, and racing stripes.

One more thing: John DeLorean was also the person responsible for the world’s first muscle car, the ’64 Pontiac GTO, a car that initiated one of the most successful and drastic industry makeovers in automotive history.

Unfortunately, you can go back to the old cars, but you can never go back to the old Detroit.

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I couldn't find a youtube video of the Tazer's John Delorean song, so he'll have to settle for "Don't Classify Me" which is somehow fitting, too.

Ha, that's pretty good, Greg. :)

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