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While Detroit embarks on the beginning days of its bankruptcy, the city’s Big Three automakers are reemerging from their own financial crises. It was four years ago that GM and Chrysler filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

And as this month marks the 150th year after Henry Ford’s birth, we take a look at what it takes to run a big auto company, and the future of Michigan’s automakers.

Bob Lutz has held top positions at GM, Ford, Chrysler, and BMW. His most recent position was that of Vice Chairman of GM from 2001 to 2010.

His newest book gives us a behind-the-scenes look at the bosses Bob Lutz has worked for, some of the most legendary names in auto history. It's called Icons and Idiots, out from Portfolio/Penguin.

Bob Lutz joined us today to talk about his book.  

Listen to the full interview above.

Cadillac got an early start on the 2012 Detroit Auto Show with the unveiling of a new small car Sunday night.

General Motors hopes the ATS will help Cadillac compete for the first time with BMW and Mercedes Benz. 

Most of the luxury cars sold around the world are small cars. Cadillac hasn't had a small luxury car for many years and it hasn't had a successful small car for even longer.

The acknowledged leaders are BMW with its 3 series and Mercedes Benz with its C-class cars. GM North American President Mark Reuss says the Cadillac ATS can outperform those German cars on the famous - or infamous - Nurburgring track - which features dangerous turns and steep hills that send cars airborne.

"[We're] taking on the European competition head to head. [The ATS] is a true driver's car in every sense," Reuss said.

Reuss said he thinks there might be demand for the ATS even in Europe, but Cadillac will focus on U.S. sales first. BMW launches its new 3 series at the Detroit auto show Monday.