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I am still seriously considering a SMART electric because I think they are great cars and the pricing for lease return vehicles looks very attractive. Until you look at the battery assurance program.

My understanding is that you have to pay SMART $80/month = $960 for battery assurance through the first 10 years of the car, and have it serviced every 12000 miles for the first 10 years of the car. This means I have to pay about $6200 for the battery.

That means the $5000 SMART is really going to cost $11,000 and the operational cost is ~$1450/year (based on 10 years @ 10,000 miles and $374 for electricity).

FIAT 500e does not have this extra cost, plus it has a rear seat and generally nicer appointments inside. If i run the same numbers for an $8000 FIAT and amortize over 8 years the cost is only $1374/year.

It looks like the FIAT wins a cost of ownership comparison.

I know SMART would say that FIAT does not guarantee the battery, but SMART does. But do they really? Does that even matter in practice?

Long term reports from other cars and my 10 year / 100k mile Prius make me think not.

Have I missed something? How does this battery assurance work in practice? Is there real value there?
 

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There's always my ED Cabrio for sale. No BAP – you own the battery. It's a 2014 that I bought brand new just four months ago. It is in as-new condition, and has more than 3-1/2 years of its new-car warranty remaining. If interested in a bargain, message me for details and to discuss an offer. I posted pics in a for-sale thread in the Classified section. Steve
 

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Interestingly enough, I just received a call from MB Leasing...they wanted to discuss my battery warranty options for my new Smart electric....then saw it was a 2014 model, and said whichever smart is newer...thinking it must be newer than that? I said I only have the one, and bought a leftover 2014, and that I wasn't interested in a battery warranty, and she shifted tone into the "You are required to..." and I stated I had purchased my battery outright. She thanked me and bid goodbye. Courteous, but it's interesting that it took nearly one full year for them to catch up to me, as I registered the new car last October or November.
 

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Interestingly enough, I just received a call from MB Leasing...they wanted to discuss my battery warranty options for my new Smart electric....then saw it was a 2014 model, and said whichever smart is newer...thinking it must be newer than that? I said I only have the one, and bought a leftover 2014, and that I wasn't interested in a battery warranty, and she shifted tone into the "You are required to..." and I stated I had purchased my battery outright.
OK, so you are the first case of MB attempting to come after someone for the BAP - and it wasn't even a car with a past BAP lease. Important information!
 
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