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US President saves Chrysler

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On January 6, 1980, a turning point occurred in the history of the American auto giant Chrysler. Jimmy Carter, who was then the President of the United States, received parliamentary approval for the allocation of $ 1.2 billion in state support to the corporation and signed the corresponding bill exactly 40 years ago. At the time, it was the most expensive anti-crisis measure adopted by the government, but it was exactly what allowed Chrysler to stay afloat and not declare bankruptcy. In 1970s the «Big Three» (Ford — General Motors — Chrysler) suffered hardships because of the competition in the market from the Japanese brands Toyota and Honda, whose cars beat their American opponents in terms of both quality and perfomance. But it was Chrysler who had the hardest time, since the corporation did not have the kind of reserve capital that Ford and GM did. As a result, the «second wind» allowed the company to stay firmly profitable in the 1980s under the leadership of Lee Iacocca, who had worked on the Ford Mustang and joined Chrysler in late 1979.

Cover: Detroit News