A Daredevil Wheel Deal

Chrysler takes a chance by buying AMC

To many auto-industry watchers, the deal was a masterstroke, another example of the dazzling acumen of Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca. To others, it was an expensive maneuver laden with risks that could cost the No. 3 U.S. automaker dearly in the future. Either way, there was no denying that the flamboyant Iacocca set corporate America abuzz last week with the announcement that Chrysler had agreed to buy a controlling interest in American Motors Corp., the longtime also-ran of the U.S. auto industry, from the firm's major shareholder, France's Renault. Code-named Project Titan at Chrysler headquarters, the deal is the most daring...