Smart to get a big brother in the US
Wednesday 06 October 2010
Daimler-owned compact car brand Smart is to launch a larger, Nissan-designed vehicle in the US next year, the company confirmed October 6.
The five-door gas-powered vehicle will hit the roads in the fourth quarter of 2011, said Smart USA, and will be sold by 75 Smart dealers across the country.
Initial sketches of the vehicle show a sporty-looking hatchback.
The introduction of a larger B-segment vehicle in the US marks a significant change in strategy for Smart, which has seen sales dwindle over the past year.
Its only US model is the tiny Fortwo, which proved wildly popular in Europe but has been something of a flop in the US - it sold 24,622 models in 2008, the first year of its introduction, and only 14,595 in 2009.
Current year-to-date sales for 2010 are at 4,779, down 61 percent on last year's already-low figures.
Smart's USA boss Jill Lajdziak said, "The new vehicle will expand smart USA's product lineup, offering five-seat capacity while maintaining the core principles of efficiency and conservation."
Although previous indications suggested that US consumers were ready to downsize their vehicles in favor of more compact, fuel-efficient vehicles, it seems that they're not ready to go below a certain size - no doubt Chrysler, readying the compact Fiat 500 for a market introduction before the year is out, is watching closely.
Life & Style blogs
Penis size study: what's 'normal' anyway?
What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
International Space Station’s huge size shown in spacewalk image
Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
- 1 Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
- 4 Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
£30000 - £35379 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company is based in Welwyn ...
£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Resource and Recruitment Manage...
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Junior IT Support Technician ...