Smart Electric Drive Launches May 15th – Lease, Battery Rental And Option Details - Smart Car Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-10-2013, 12:08 PM Thread Starter
 
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Smart Electric Drive Launches May 15th – Lease, Battery Rental And Option Details

Looks like 3rd time's the charm:

Smart Electric Drive Launches May 15th – Lease, Battery Rental And Option Details

Quote:
After a couple delays in getting the Smart ED (Electric Drive) into the hands of customers in the United States, the first of the 2 seat, 68 mile cars will be released on Wednesday, May 15th.

The first wave of cars will only be in selected regions, think mostly CARB states; namely CA, CT, ME, MA, MD, NJ, NY, OR, RI, VT. A full national roll-out begins on September 1st of this year. It should be noted that Canadian deliveries went off basically as planned, with the first cars being delivered in mid-April.

The Smart Ed comes in two basic trims. The first being the coupe which starts at $25,000, with a Cabrio model for some open-air fun also available from $28,000. There is also a $750 dollar destination charge that also applies to both models.

One of the more intriguing things about the Smart Ed is that it is the electric vehicle in the US to offer three different financing options, including the recently announced battery rental deal.

Here is how the three deals work (as we have learned from the dealership level):

1. You buy the car outright and receive a 4 year/50,000 mile warranty on the vehicle (no option as of yet to extend that)
2. You lease the car. Smart is promoting what seems to now be the “standard EV lease deal” of $199 a month with $2,000 down
3. You purchase or lease the car and then rent the battery

It is the third option is what we are most interested in exploring, especially recognizing that it was this financing option that actually caused the Smart ED’s introduction to be delayed in the US, as lawyers hashed out a way to absolve the dealerships of the liability on the batteries…as is required of them in places like California.

Inside the battery rental offer:

- Purchase and rent the battery: Smart USA values the battery pack inside the car at $5,010, so if you are purchasing the car, the base net is now $19,990. Vehicle owners are then required to pay $80/per month on a 5 year/60 month term. Smart has a renewal program entering month 61 that lets you extend the deal for another 5 years, at the same $80/month rate.

- Lease and rent the battery: similar to the lease deal, except in this case you are looking at $119 lease and a $80 battery rental

It should be noted that under this program, Smart now warranties your battery pack to retain 80% of its charge for the duration of the contract, up to 12,500 miles per year.

[...]

I'm curious to know then, if the full car (including the battery) is purchased, does the 4-year/50,000-mile warranty NOT guarantee an 80% charge retention? The plot thickens...

Also:

Quote:
If at anytime you want to break the rental deal, you can, provided you then purchase the aforementioned battery at the full $5,000 valuation. If you don’t wish to buy the battery and also own the car, that is also apparently an option as Smart’s fine print says “…once you cancel, you will be required to return the battery to mercedes-benz financial services.” We have no clue exactly how this works, or why anyone would choose this option.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-10-2013, 12:35 PM
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Hey smartUSA, have your attorney call my attorney . . .
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-10-2013, 01:43 PM
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September 1st?

WOW, September 1, that is 3-1/2 months, seems like an enormous amount of lag time before the release of smart ED's to the non-CARB states. Wonder how many potential buyers will forgo there plan of owning a smart, and purchase a Nissan's Leaf or other available electric vehicle?
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-10-2013, 01:49 PM
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OR, just cross the border and buy one in one of the states that gets them next week?
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-10-2013, 02:08 PM
 
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With Smart's range and no QuickCharge, it will be hell of an adventure to drive it back!
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-15-2013, 10:20 AM
 
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Here is an interesting twist on the battery 'rental':

Can battery rental reduce consumer jitters with EVs? Smart thinks so

"And Smart says there's another plus: "Should battery technology evolve to a new and better level from Daimler's joint venture Deutsche ACCUmotive, then owners can, with advance notice, switch their contract to the new battery pack without any change in the terms or rates of the contract."

The joint venture's battery will power the new Mercedes-Benz B-class Electric Drive car that goes on sale next year and will be the only plug-in electric wearing the three-point star. Smart is owned by Mercedes. The battery in the 2013 Smart ForTwo Electric Drive is supplied by Tesla Motors Inc."
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-15-2013, 06:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by E SMART View Post
The battery in the 2013 Smart ForTwo Electric Drive is supplied by Tesla Motors Inc."
The battery in the Generation II Smart ED was provided by Tesla. That partnership has ended.

Here is a quote from an article that outlines the new battery technology partnership:

2013 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive First Drive

"Ninety-three lithium ion battery cells, created by Daimler partner Li-Tec, are laid flat under the floor with particular automotive requirements in mind. The primary benefit of the new design is that the electric powertrain can function well anywhere between -50°F and 176°F. The possible range from a full charge of the 17.6-kilowatt hour pack is 90 miles, and a full recharge, which never happens to a typical owner or lessee, would need seven hours from a 13-amp 220-volt plug or six hours from a 16-amp plug."
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-15-2013, 07:03 PM
 
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Lets see. I live in a carb state and the nearest dealer is 3 states away.I ought to be able to get it home by the time they come out in the other states. LOL
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-15-2013, 08:59 PM
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ED release May 15?

It must have been a relatively quite release apparently, I hadn't heard a peep.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 05:44 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmartElectric View Post
The battery in the Generation II Smart ED was provided by Tesla. That partnership has ended.

Here is a quote from an article that outlines the new battery technology partnership:

2013 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive First Drive

"Ninety-three lithium ion battery cells, created by Daimler partner Li-Tec, are laid flat under the floor with particular automotive requirements in mind. The primary benefit of the new design is that the electric powertrain can function well anywhere between -50°F and 176°F. The possible range from a full charge of the 17.6-kilowatt hour pack is 90 miles, and a full recharge, which never happens to a typical owner or lessee, would need seven hours from a 13-amp 220-volt plug or six hours from a 16-amp plug."
As always, can't believe everything you see on the internet, main point of the post was the battery trade up aspect, have not seen this posted elsewhere but why would one otherwise potentially 'pay' $80/mo for up to 10 years (or $9,600) for a battery whose retail worth is stated to be $5,010? With the 'promise' that you could apply to better tech at pre-agreed price that alone could be worth it, if it ever comes to pass. As the improvement from Gen I to Gen II to Gen III that could be a strong possibility.
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