Michigan and the Great Lakes

Billy Durant

Creator of General Motors
Lawrence R. Gustin
A new edition of the classic book on the flamboyant genius who helped lead America into the automobile age


Praise for the first edition:

"A fascinating book [and] a sympathetic look at the man who glued General Motors together and in the process made Flint one of the great industrial centers of America."
Detroit Free Press

"It is refreshing to report that Billy Durant is one of the best researched books dealing with an automotive giant."
Antique Automobile

"Billy Durant fills in a masterly way the only important void remaining concerning the work of the motorcar pioneers."
—Richard Crabb, author of Birth of a Giant: The Men and Incidents That Gave America the Motorcar

What explains Billy Durant's powerful influence on the auto industry during its early days? And why, given Durant's impact, has he been nearly forgotten for decades?

In search of answers to these questions, Lawrence Gustin interviewed Durant's widow, who provided a wealth of previously unpublished autobiographical notes, letters, and personal papers. Gustin also interviewed two of Durant's personal secretaries and others who had known and worked with the man who created General Motors. The result is the amazing account of the mastermind behind what would become, as the twentieth century progressed, the world's largest company.

Lawrence R. Gustin was a writer and editor for twenty-three years at the Flint (Mich.) Journal. In 1973 he wrote the first edition of Billy Durant, which won the McKean Memorial Cup for historical research from the Antique Automobile Club of America. In 2006, he authored David Buick's Marvelous Motor Car, the first biography of the founder of the Buick automobile. He lives in Michigan's Oakland County.

Praise / Awards

  • "Conveys the worthy reminder that whatever Durant may have lacked in terms of prudence or risk assessment, he more than balanced in terms of rocklike confidence. . . . Gustin demonstrates convincingly that Durant had vision, however clouded. [This new] edition includes an equally new epilogue. . . . We're very pleased that this book is back in print."
    Hemmings Classic Car

Look Inside

Product Details

  • 304 pages.
  • 88 B&W photographs.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Ebook
  • 2012
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-02936-5

  • PDF: Adobe Digital Editions e-book (DRM Protected)

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  • $18.95 U.S.

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  • Car, Automobile, General Motors, Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Cadillac, Buick, Chevrolet, United Motors Company, Frigidaire, Henry Ford, Pierre du Pont, Alfred P. Sloan, Flint, Michigan