I recently saw a posting that many of the "stand alone" Smart car dealerships will be closing.  Is that the result of the pending June 2011 Mercedes take over of the Smart brand?  I live in Pensacola and the closest Smart center is in New Orleans, LA to the west, next is Jacksonville, FL to the east, Tampa, FL and Sarasota, FL to the south.  We have a Mercedes dealership in Pensacola, but have been told to avoid them due to cost.  Are the closings factual?

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There is all kinds of speculation as to what will happen to the stand alone smart dealerships.  Part of this is based on the Mercedes-Benz takeover of smart beginning July 1st.  One of the stand alones in the Los Angeles area acts like they will still be in business.  I don't think anyone at this point really knows and we will have to wait and see what happens.  I personally hope that most Mercedes-Benz stores will also take on the smart line and service them as well. 

Robert and David, and any others:

the Penske dealerships are to be closing unless other agreements are made with smartUSA's new leadership.

 

Scope this thread here for similar questions and concerns from the insider members.

http://www.smartusainsider.com/forum/topics/questionssmartusa-on-th...

There is a similar thread on SCoA, too.

As soon as we receive information from smartUSA, then it will be posted.  

We have been promised a "seemless transition" by Mercedes... I hope this doesn't mean that our pants will be ripped and our butt exposed...

GetSmrt28277 said:

Robert and David, and any others:

the Penske dealerships are to be closing unless other agreements are made with smartUSA's new leadership.

 

Scope this thread here for similar questions and concerns from the insider members.

http://www.smartusainsider.com/forum/topics/questionssmartusa-on-th...

There is a similar thread on SCoA, too.

As soon as we receive information from smartUSA, then it will be posted.  

Another (good) one bites the dust ... without replacement (for the foreseeable future) - smartcenter Denver - R.I.P.
 
It's official: The smartcenter Denver is no-more (as of Saturday, May 14th 2011). Paul moved to Kuni Honda on I-25 and Arapahoe and he will be able to conduct most any work on our cars (other than warranty related).
 
Let's vote with our feet and make sure we take our business to him! He has the expertise and experience that most anyone else will lack for a while to come.
 
In my (not-so-humble) opinion MB-USA (and Germany) really effed this one up royally. Enough so that some Senior Management should have to seriously explain themselves (this isn't rocket science, if you know the American car buyer and the smart brand perception here - not counting aficionados like ourselves).
 

/rant off
Not so sure I'd call selling over 45K cars (not to mention fronting the money to import the smart into the USA in the first place) mismanagement.  Could some things have been handled differently - probably so.  The bottom line is that without Roger Penske there would be no 451 smarts in the USA at all.

Veganman said:
I would blame Penske. They've mismanaged the brand since day 1.
Amen to that. And we still haven't seen any advertising from Mercedes concerning the Smart. I have called all the Mercedes dealers recently here in Denver to inquire what was happening with their dealership and Smart, and no one knew. In fact, one dealer practically hung up on me. Mercedes did "f" this one up, with poor planning and implementation, as decisions like this are NOT made overnight. So why all the "secrecy" about what's going on? And, the way Mercedes is acting here locally, they seem to NOT want anything to really do with the car, nor it's buyers, in the "attitude" that I have found. I will definitely take my work over to Paul, and God forbid we have to have warranty work done on our cars, as who at Mercedes is going to have the expertise to do the work properly? Finally, take a look at every MB dealership in the Denver area, and you will not see any mention of Smart....
Got an email from Smart Center Seattle and they said they were staying open. I am a teacher and this is a really busy time of year, so I did not even know stuff was going on until I got that email!
The Seattle center seems to have one of the best word of mouth reputations around; you're lucky they'll continue as your smart center.

Mel said:
Got an email from Smart Center Seattle and they said they were staying open. I am a teacher and this is a really busy time of year, so I did not even know stuff was going on until I got that email!

Check this out, an article regarding the takeover.

 

http://www.autoweek.com/article/20110214/CARNEWS/110219925

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