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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-08-2015, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
Mike700
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Future of Smart in America

DON'T SHOOT THE MESSENGER. Someone I know who is an economic news junkie claims he read in an economic news mag that Smart is pulling the plug on their US import and dealer network at the end of the 2016 sales year due to continuing poor sales even after the intro of the 453. He doesn't recall what mag where he read it. I don't believe it myself but I live in Chicago and I bought my 453 the first week they were on sale but still have not spotted another 453 on the road. OK - I have braced myself for the coming onslaught of responses!
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-08-2015, 10:10 PM
 
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Sounds interesting, but the timing seems implausible. Plus, Mercedes needs smart to keep their CAFE numbers in line in the face of the ugly gas hogs they sell to the conspicuous consumers! However, unless sales pick up soon, maybe it is true and Mercedes will tie their can to the Electric B Class for the purposes of CAFE.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 03:25 AM
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...an economic news junkie claims he read in an economic news mag that Smart is pulling the plug on their US import and dealer network at the end of the 2016 sales year due to continuing poor sales even after the intro of the 453. He doesn't recall what mag where he read it.
With apologies to Mark Twain, "The rumors of smart's death have been greatly exaggerated."

No messengers being shot but it is hard to discuss the heresay of an "economic news junkie" who may be recalling a "bad mushroom" dream?

The imminent death of smart "worldwide" has been written for years.

Until Daimler begins cutting the bloatstaff at smartUSA, and buying the M-B dealers out of what must have been an EXPENSIVE Franchise Fee, the Café Credit beat goes on.

So let's just say, while the smart tent may be sagging until the tent pegs are pulled up, so what?

http://www.wsj.com/articles/daimler-...car-1441302587
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Last edited by MB DNA; 12-09-2015 at 03:55 AM.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 06:00 AM
 
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With the new 453 being around for a little over three months, a Cabrio in the wings for the spring and then an ED later next year, MB USA is not going to be abandoning Smart anytime soon. You can take that to the bank.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 06:30 AM
 
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smart USA only sold 662 units last month. That includes the new 453 model, which they haven't advertised. MB pulled smart pulled from the Australian market already. smart will most likely continue sell well, in the European market place. I don't see sales number improving this December. Fuel being around under 2 bucks a gallon regular. Isn't helping either. You can not continue to just offer one niche model.

The smart city car, not the only one hurting. For the first time Fiat only sold, a little over 300 500's, compared to the smart. The new 500X, is there leader if you want to call it that. Bigger here is better, in a small way.

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 06:38 AM
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smart USA only sold 662 units last month.
And somewhere in those 662 are Café Credits that grease the skids for the sales of HIGH MARGIN gas guzzling AMG's...
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 07:35 AM
 
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And somewhere in those 662 are Café Credits that grease the skids for the sales of HIGH MARGIN gas guzzling AMG's...
Two separate brands smart, and MB. Same with Fiat. 4 different brands. Fiat, Ferrari, Maserati, Alfa. Bentley and VW. No Cafe, credits connection. The smart is not sold under the MB name plate. The smart just shares the show room, with MB's.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Mike T View Post
Sounds interesting, but the timing seems implausible. Plus, Mercedes needs smart to keep their CAFE numbers in line in the face of the ugly gas hogs they sell to the conspicuous consumers! However, unless sales pick up soon, maybe it is true and Mercedes will tie their can to the Electric B Class for the purposes of CAFE.

However, the smart sales are so small, do you really think in the big picture, that has a serious impact on CAFE? Not me. Then factor in the loss building each and everyone they DO sell. Sounds spot on to me...
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 09:25 AM
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The CAFE formula is so convoluted that just having the smart and the B-Class electric available for sale helps M-B USA a lot - it's not solely based on total sales. The manufacturers can also buy and sell CAFE credits which further muddies the water: Fact #871: May 4, 2015 Most Manufacturers Have Positive CAFE Credit Balances at the End of Model Year 2013 | Department of Energy
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-09-2015, 09:34 AM
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Two separate brands smart, and MB. The smart is not sold under the MB name plate. The smart just shares the show room, with MB's.
You may want to do a little research on Café Credits?

In this case the credits are OWNED by Daimler and "shared" as they see fit.

Café Credits can actually be sold, ask Elon Musk. And in the case of Fiat shared...
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