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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well maybe its partly ego, but its defiantly about money as smart/MB Canada confirmed this past week why the delay in releasing the hundreds of smart 451's that are at dealerships and sitting at the dock here in Canada.

Turns out Roger Penske/Smart USA and smart international decided that they would approve/launch the vehicles simulatiously. So while there are almost 1,000 smart 451's in Canada none can be driven until the US 451 is ready to be sold, which means it could be January (over 2 months since the 451's arrived).

This has been hugely upsetting to Canadian dealers and soon to be owners of 451's as with the recent dollar difference there had already been "issues" with American smart dealers due to pricing differences and now this.

Smart/MB Canada are meeting with all/most of the smart dealership owners the first week of December to discuss this issue and see what they can do as they where not told this would be the case when orders where placed and until this last week were not told what the delay was about.
 

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MB Canada confirmed this past week why the delay in releasing the hundreds of smart 451's that are at dealerships and sitting at the dock here in Canada.

Turns out Roger Penske/Smart USA and smart international decided that they would approve/launch the vehicles simulatiously.

That is horrible. How does Penske have any say over what happens in Canada? The Canadians have had the 450 for years. What should it matter to Penske if they get the 451 a couple months before us?
 

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The only way it can be good for us is if we get cars with the 48K mile warranty - and I don't think that's in the works. No way I can see this benefits the US folks and it definitely does a number on our Canadian friends. :(
 

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I don't understand that either. It's possible that Penske asked MB to delay the Canadian launch until 2008, but since he doesn't smarts are sold through the MB network, it would come down to a MB decision.
 

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Maybe there is a potential recall issue already and they want to hold the Canadian 451s until it can be resolved. Like the door lock problems with the UK 451s that apparently use the same locks as the N.A. 451s.
 

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If there were no Smarts in Canada I could see that happening, but Canadians have had the Smart for several years, most of the public don't know a 450 from a 451, so I can't see why the two countries need to launch simultaneously.
 

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Do you think PAG thinks we (americans) will drive to canada and get the new U.S. approved 451 from their dealers and cancel our orders through them? How hard is it to drive across the border in a new car? Is it do able?
Vicki
#1200/15 apr/no config yet
 

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Do you think PAG thinks we (americans) will drive to canada and get the new U.S. approved 451 from their dealers and cancel our orders through them? How hard is it to drive across the border in a new car? Is it do able?
The Canadian car is different from the USA car and cannot be registered here. So the answer is NO.
 

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spdickey.... I don't know about that....the LHD Smart 451 NA 1.0L Brit or Canadian or USA cars do not have any differences that I can find or see in any literature... sounds to me like they ALL have the Features that make the 451 pass USA DOT and EPA standards.... in fact the way I read it that is the whole point of the 451 and why the Europeans are pissed at US for the changes

Yes There are options in Canada and England we are not offered because PAG made a Narrow import decision.

I doubt very seriously the Canadian NA Passion is any different then the USA NA Passion..... I don't even think there is a VIN character that describes a 2008 451 as Canadian imported just country of origin I believe.... all that info is also on the original certificate of origin....

I bet a 08 451 coming cross border and being presented in any state for registration only needs a bill of sale, taxes paid, and license attached...
 

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Sounds like it's about publicity. The louder the Canuks complain the more the Jan launch will be heard round the world. Any talent agent will tell you...even negative press is good press. It will make Jan. that much more a momentous occasion.
Also, why should Canada get there's any sooner than us, eh? Just my 2 cents as always. :)
 

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spdickey.... I don't know about that....the LHD Smart 451 NA 1.0L Brit or Canadian or USA cars do not have any differences that I can find or see in any literature... sounds to me like they ALL have the Features that make the 451 pass USA DOT and EPA standards.... in fact the way I read it that is the whole point of the 451 and why the Europeans are pissed at US for the changes.
Some of the differences between Canadian and USA cars are, Daytime Running Lights on Canadian cars, front amber reflectors on USA cars, KM on Canadian, MPH on USA. Probably some other differences as well.

Biggest problem with buying one there and bringing it here... the cars are all ready spoken for in Canada. We will have to wait our turn.
 

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Some of the differences between Canadian and USA cars are, Daytime Running Lights on Canadian cars, front amber reflectors on USA cars, KM on Canadian, MPH on USA. Probably some other differences as well.

Biggest problem with buying one there and bringing it here... the cars are all ready spoken for in Canada. We will have to wait our turn.
Sez who that only Canadian 451s have daytime running lights (even if ours don't, that it isn't a US reg)? What difference does amber reflectors have? Where are metric instruments US illegal? Are they all spoken-for; are they all built-to-customer purchase order? "Probably..." what? Gotta do better than that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
There are a lot of 451's still for sale in Canada, (just can't drive'em) we didn't get a lot of information for pre-sale heck when I ordered mine I ordered blindly, without any idea of price and we didn't have $99 deposits, we had to put down $1,000.

I guess all this ensures Penske that nobody comes up to Canada and buys 451's to sell down in the US prior to them being available in the US directly. Its a good blocking maneuver by Penske but at a cost to all the Canadian buyers.
 

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Release those smarts! Release those smarts! It is only for the publicity at launch time.
Personnally, I was waiting for the feedback to the real questions we have posed, NA 451 true mileage........
There is also a waiting list in Canada so the risk of I or anyone jumping the border and registering the car at Uncle DraftDodger's or elsewhere is slim...
It is too bad the Southern Big Brother can push the Canuks around like this, we now have more than 35,000 ordered, this would not impact sales in 2008 and this scuffle would be old news once real PR is needed.
 

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There are a lot of 451's still for sale in Canada, (just can't drive'em) we didn't get a lot of information for pre-sale heck when I ordered mine I ordered blindly, without any idea of price and we didn't have $99 deposits, we had to put down $1,000.

I guess all this ensures Penske that nobody comes up to Canada and buys 451's to sell down in the US prior to them being available in the US directly. Its a good blocking maneuver by Penske but at a cost to all the Canadian buyers.
I think this is the most legitimate explanation, much more than my earlier thoughts about a recall for the door lock problem.
 

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Yes there is a requirement for a certain number of square inches of amber on the front of a USA car but some how I doubt the Canadian model does not have this feature... from the photos it looks to me like it is built into the head light assy sides

Yes we KNOW the 450 did not have all the USA required stuff...the 451 is a new animal....

The 451 are designed and Factory built to USA compliance as far as I know and it makes no economical sense to have a "Canadian only" variant... I do not see any literature for dealer installed manditory safety or polution features... I search every day for every bit of technical info on these cars as is out there.... Now a member of 6 Brit sites, 2 German and I poester the hell out of a lot of folks for info

Ref the electroninc gadgets like DRLs...for years now MOST vehicles have all these features and there is usualy some way to turn on or off the feature...in Ford speak it is called a Vehicle "Personality" ...

Our new Smarts will have several features that will have some tricky sequence of button or switch pushes to enable or defeat them...

I suspect ALL Smarts will have DRLs from the factory and the computer set to "enable" in the countries that require the feature...

ALL models will be disabled by default to use the rev gage if you order without the gage...Later if you need the rev gage you can not just mount and plug it in..the ECU/PCM or what ever the main brain is called must be programmed to start sending that data for it to work....

The conformance to the USA DOT and EPA standards for the NA gasoline models would not violate any Canadian laws -----diesel and turbo options are another subject

But what I really think is that typical vehicle registration bureaucrats will not be able to distinguish a Canadian Smart 451 from an USA imported version...that is--- NOW that 2008s are certified for importation to the USA

BTW I suspect that getting a Brit version, say a Brabus model, imported just got easier too!

I do not think Roger Pensky is flexing his muscle because any fear of lost sales to cross border shenanigans... I think it may well be recall concerns or marketing hype related...

I sort of hope it is recall issue to tell the truth...WE know historically first year vehicles have bugs...
 

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In broad terms, Canadian smarts (451s) cannot legally be imported to the US, because they do not display the required EPA and NHTSA certification stickers. Yes it's essentially the same car, but without those labels, not legal.

There is an exemption that allows import for personal use only (and not for resale), if the car meets current Canadian standards, and the manufacturer supplies a letter stating that it also meets federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS) with a few minor exceptions (like speedometer labeling and certain lighting and reflective marking requirements).

Possible in theory, but good luck getting that letter from MB. I believe that MB was one of the leading lobbyists for getting those import restrictions enacted in the first place. That tells you how supportive they are of grey market imports.
 
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