By DCB Editorial, April 14, 2022
The Smart brand may be dead in the water to the average car buying consumer. But if you have deep pockets, a lot of highly capable and intelligent people propping up the egos of senior management, then you have a reinvention of a reinvention. Smart is a Mercedes creation, a small car brand that sells in small numbers. The company sold just 38,000 vehicles in 2021. Clearly, this is a company on life support, funded by alpha males over at Mercedes. The Smart car brand has been reinvented so many times that the word reinvented had to be reinvented. The new spelling is… Smart.
But here it is, still going strong on the back of a 67-percent annual sales slide. Smart cars should be dead. But it lives, revamped for 2022 as a trendy Frankenstein electric vehicle brand.
Yes, Smart is fully embracing the switch to EVs because the bright marketing people over at Mercedes HQ did some customer experience research. And they discovered people really do want to buy a $40k car that can travel 90 miles on a single charge.
The new Smart 1 EV is a joint collaboration between Mercedes and Chinese auto power house Geely. The Smart 1 will be built by Geely in China and use Geely’s proprietary EV technology. Mercedes will be busy providing Geely with Smart 1 logos and decals.
The interior is similar in size to the Mercedes E Class. And Mercedes is boasting a low drag coefficient. It is quite normal for Mercedes to boast… about anything. The Smart 1 will use a 66kWh battery, has a claimed range of 273 miles and superfast-rapid charging.
Cost? Pricing is yet to be revealed. At a guess it should start from £38K when it launches in the UK in mid-2023.