Smart Car


Smart Car 2005

A fairly low-key launch for the Smart Car. Though if I had a car, such a small, urban vehicle would be my first choice.

Smart USA has no plans to spend money on ads in 2007 or 2008 to support the U.S. launch early next year of the Smart car. Whether or not that is smart remains to be seen. But what already has been shown is that the car's pre-arrival word-of-mouth buzz is extensive and praise from international owners borders on legendary. Since its introduction in 1998, more than 700,000 have been sold in 36 countries. "We haven't spent anything and we have no plans for advertising in 2008," said Ken Kettenbeil, a rep for Smart USA, Bloomfield Hills, Mich., a subsidiary of Penske Automotive Group, which is handling U.S. distribution. Smart is from Mercedes, a division of German-based Daimler.


Smart also is tying into a growing movement among consumers to go "green." Gas mileage is expected to be around 40 mpg. MSRP starts at $11,590. Its minuscule size—8-by-8 feet—means it needs a lot less room to park. Smart was a sponsor at the Live Earth concerts in July, which enabled it to reach a targeted audience with its eco-friendliness. A supporting two-page ad in Rolling Stone, paid for by Smart's German colleagues, offered a simple tag, "Open your mind." The Live Earth appearance saw the micro-car feted by such celebrities as Snoop Dogg and Jon Bon Jovi eager to garner green credibility among their fans. In addition to Penske Automotive Group, Smart's arrival in the U.S. is being headed by Smart USA president David Schembri, an ex-head of marketing at Mercedes-Benz USA.

[From Advance Buzz Has Drivers In U.S. Anxious To Get Smart]

Smart Car 2005-02-18

These photos are from 2005, when the prototype was first displayed


I know Jay really wants to test drive this car when it becomes available and depending on how that goes, we may have one adorning our driveway.

The blog is navigating a lot more smoothly. The car would be okay for street traffic, but even there I wonder. Here, in Los Angeles, traffic is quite speedy and mean.

The SMART can do speedy to some degree. Check out this video review:

They do pretty well on I35 in Austin, TX.

Speeding on I35? How is that even possible? Did Ben White ever get finished?

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This page contains a single entry by Seth A. published on October 1, 2007 1:28 PM.

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