How does everyone feel about the decision from smart USA to ditch our gas engines to go only with electric motors after this year? I am NOT happy about it, because you are lucky to get 100 miles before the electric motor needs recharged. THAT'S NOT ENOUGH! My nearest smart center is over 200 miles from my house. I would never get the car home!
I think the poor sales, and let's be honest, failure of the smart brand in recent years is to blame on poor marketing from smart. They have marketed the car only as a "city car". While it may be perfect in the city, it's also perfect in the country. Where I live, we have hills, mountains, back roads, trees and nature. My smart is perfectly fine here!
I do not believe going all-electric is the answer. Many smart centers must agree, as so many will quit selling the smart brand after this year.
I produce television commercials for a living. I could create new commercials that would spark an interest back in the smart brand. I could do it inexpensively. Heck, I could even do it just by running on YouTube and Facebook.
I am not sure how to reach out to smart USA, other than on here. I would love the opportunity to speak with them about properly marketing the cars in the USA! I want to save this brand!
Rob, I think we all feel the same way that you do about smart USA's decision to discontinue offering the ICE engine in the 453 model. In our smart owner's club, the So Cal Smarties, we have maybe 20 members who have ED's. They really can't participate in any of our events because of the driving distances that we cover, which usually exceed 100 miles of driving on a single outing. We had one member drive her ED to one of our outings and had to find a charging station, then take a bus to the outing location which was the smart Roadshow introducing the 453. She had to charge her car while she was at the event so she could get home. Electric drives for the most part are not practical and even with the 453 ED's limited range, it may be a real stretch for these models to be a sales success. We sure wish the ICE engine would still be available, even by special order, but sadly I think it is permanently gone. There are a lot of things that the mothership here in the US could have done. Their bottom line has to be profit. smart has never earned a profit & they probably feel that even if they advertised and they sold a few more cars, it wouldn't be enough. All the bad press hasn't helped the brand, either.
If you want to get in touch with smartUSA, look in your owner's manual or even call the number posted on a sticker under the driver's side sun visor. There headquarters are now in Atlanta, Georgia.
Thank you Robert. I will be in touch with smartUSA. It may not help, but if I don't try, I won't know.
You are correct. I am really happy that you will be contacting smart/MBZUSA with a message to encourage them to reconsider their dropping the ICE engine from the 453 line-up. I hope that you will be able to get up high enough in the chain of command & talk to a decision maker or someone to carry the message to those in charge. I wish I knew someone but all the people I knew have left the building when they moved to Atlanta.