Legendary Fiat Chrysler head Sergio Marchionne has passed away.
No cause of death has been reported, although one source, Letter43.it, cited anonymous sources who attributed it to an embolism caused during surgery.
“Unfortunately, what we feared has come to pass,” wrote John Elkann, head of Exor, Fiat’s holding company, in an email to employees. “Sergio Marchionne, man, and friend is gone. “My family and I will be forever grateful for what he has done.”
Prior to that, he forced General Motors to pay $2 billion dollars to end its partnership with Fiat, which was used towards the production of new models, increasing the value of the company more than 1,000 percent.
Marchionne has also been the purveyor of several colorful statements over the years, blasting competitors and technologies alike, including the electric car industry and his own Fiat 500e for being a money loser.
He also carried his own sense of style, famously wearing black sweaters and black jeans to many conferences, which he claimed were purchased on sale at 2 a.m. in the morning.
Other habits included a reported 10 coffees a day and a steady stack of cigarettes to carry him through.