Auto Innovator John DeLorean, March 19
While only about 9,000 of his namesake cars were ever built, Auto Innovator John Z. DeLorean's place in auto history was assured as soon as the gull-winged sports cars rumbled off the assembly line. While apt to be remembered popularly as the man behind the car modified for time travel in the "Back to the Future" movies, DeLorean left a powerful imprint in automaking built on unique, souped-up cars. DeLorean died in Summit, Mich., on March 19 of complications from a recent stroke. He was 80.