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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/bal-bz.smart24nov24,0,4287500.story
Originally posted at http://www.chicagotribune.com/services/newspaper/printedition/wednesday/chi-wed_tinycarnov21,0,1607651,print.story

baltimoresun.com 11/24 said:
In this case, an impossibly tiny vehicle called the Smart Fortwo that isn't even for sale in the United States until January, but its manufacturer says its limited production is sold out through much of 2008.

...More than 30,000 prospective buyers have made $99 deposits on the Fortwo on Smart's Web site since June 2006.

...Schembri wouldn't give a sales projection for 2008, though analysts have pegged the number at about 20,000. Someone who places a deposit now probably would not receive a car until "the very later part of 2008," he said.
Ouch! Glad I got my $99 in early!

 

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Given the increase in gas prices and worries over CO2 emissions, it should come as no surprise that the Smart Car is going to be a major hit. After all, look back at the Toyota Prius; even with the $20,000+ price tag, a lot of people, myself included, purchased the Prius.

So now the Smart Car comes in at a price that's way lower than the Prius. It seems reasonable to expect that even more people will go for the Smart Car.


Bob Diaz
 

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Does this mean alot of us are out of luck:

"Regrettably, sources at the parent company Smart GmbH advises that smart USA will only be receiving some 16,000 Smart cars for their entire dealership network for the 2008 model year. So, regardless of the number of Smart cars reserved or orders received, the sales potential is very limited." (2008 Smart Car link)
 

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Not too long ago, Penske or Schembri said there would be between 20,000 and 25,000 in the year's run. My guess, to give smart GmbH a firm round number to work with, is 24,000 at a steady rate of 2,000 per month. That looks like a number that the logistics and delivery chain could accomodate.
 

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Does this mean alot of us are out of luck:

Regrettably, sources at the parent company Smart GmbH advises that smart USA will only be receiving some 16,000 Smart cars for their entire dealership network for the 2008 model year. So, regardless of the number of Smart cars reserved or orders received, the sales potential is very limited.
Although you haven't surrounding anything with quotes, it appears as if you're quoting from something here. Do you have a source and a date? I didn't see it in the article mentioned in the thread start. Am I missing something here?
 

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Maybe, just maybe with the demand of smart cars being what it is, they will build a plant or retro-fit one that has been shuttered in the continental US to produce them here in the states. It may be just a pipe dream now, but with oil and gasoline doing what they are, it may just happen.

PhilWinIL
 

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Discussion Starter #10
they will build a plant or retro-fit one that has been shuttered in the continental US to produce them here in the states. It may be just a pipe dream now...
Depends on what you are smoking... wouldn't happen here for a very long time. Easier to ramp up production in smartville, France. That could happen pretty quickly.
 

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In the case of the Toyota Prius, Toyota did ramp up their production to meet demand, BUT it took time to do that. From what I recall, it was about a year or so, to increase production.

Bob Diaz
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The smartville plan in France can produce 500 cars per day. Assuming a 5 day week that's 130,000 cars per year. At seven days a week its over 182,000 cars per year. The USA needs around 25-30,000 cars to satisfy the reservations, that's about 50-60 production days worth of cars, assuming they do nothing but US spec vehicles.

With those kind of numbers, smart could easily make more USA cars and less Euro cars for a few weeks and take care of the backlog if they wanted to.

http://www.economy-point.org/s/smartville-hambach.html
 

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The smartville plan in France can produce 500 cars per day. Assuming a 5 day week that's 130,000 cars per year. At seven days a week its over 182,000 cars per year. The USA needs around 25-30,000 cars to satisfy the reservations, that's about 50-60 production days worth of cars, assuming they do nothing but US spec vehicles.

With those kind of numbers, smart could easily make more USA cars and less Euro cars for a few weeks and take care of the backlog if they wanted to.

http://www.economy-point.org/s/smartville-hambach.html
We need to remember however that in France it is not possible to hire and lay off like it is in this country. In general if a person is hired that, in most cases, constitutes a lifelong contract. Because of this French employers tend not to hire during periods of large demand as when that period is over they generally can't get rid of excess employees.
 

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The smartville plan in France can produce 500 cars per day. Assuming a 5 day week that's 130,000 cars per year. At seven days a week its over 182,000 cars per year. The USA needs around 25-30,000 cars to satisfy the reservations, that's about 50-60 production days worth of cars, assuming they do nothing but US spec vehicles.

With those kind of numbers, smart could easily make more USA cars and less Euro cars for a few weeks and take care of the backlog if they wanted to.

http://www.economy-point.org/s/smartville-hambach.html
IMHO

From a marketing standpoint, maybe it's best to start with a backlog of orders. I think timing is critical here, because once people know there's a backlog, announce that Smart is ramping up production to meet the increased demand.

Issue a major press release about increased demand and production, but keep the waiting time about a month to a few months. This generates an excitement over your product and catches the attention of potential buyers.

With more and more Smart Cars appearing on the roads and the image of high demand, this will grab the potential buyer's attention.


Bob Diaz
 
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