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Racer, Chrysler exec John Tedder

by David Zatz on

John Lance Tedder, who got Lee Iacocca’s Chairman of the Board Award when he was a service development manager for Chrysler Corporation and an NHRA national champion, died last week at the age of 76.

John Tedder

Mr. Tedder was born on September 19, 1938, and graduated from Ferris State University. He became a service development manager for Chrysler, alongside a 30-year drag racing career during which he won the NHRA National Championship in the Super Stock AA Division in 1972, in the pictured Barracuda.

The “Mr. MoTech” name reflected his success in recruiting for MoTech Automotive Educational Center of Livonia, Michigan, which provided training in servicing, troubleshooting, and repairing cars and trucks, including diesels.  He visited numerous high schools in Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana to talk about careers in the industry.

Mr. Tedder built the pictured Plymouth Barracuda, blueprinting a 426 Hemi powerplant for it to develop 700 horsepower on racing gasoline. He hit the quarter mile finish at 140 mph, in 9.70 seconds, before winning the championship.

Mr. Tedder died two years after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.  While his funeral has already taken place, those who wish to send their regrets have been asked to make donations to the Hospice of the Chesapeake, 90 Ritchie Highway, Pasadena, MD 21122 or to the National Parkinson Foundation, Gift Processing Center, P.O. Box 5018, Hagerstown, MD 21741-5018. Thanks, Marc Rozman.

David Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304


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