The future of Smart determined the deal Daimler and GeelyMay 12, 2020
The German brand will now become a joint venture with a Chinese concern.
According to Markus Schäfer, head of Mercedes Research and Development, the future of Smart is much more promising than once, as the EV brand is created as a joint venture between Daimler and Geely.
The deal, concluded in January, includes the production of Smart cars in China. The brand will continue to focus on electric, city cars. Schaefer said that although Smart was successful in terms of consumer orientation, it was not commercially viable.
“It was a successful product from the point of view of customers who liked it, and the transition to the EV brand was a bold move, but in the end we missed the opportunity to make it commercially successful. We need to increase the volume. At current volumes, we do not have scales, and we must be competitive in a world where a large volume, especially in this segment, is extremely important, ”Schaefer said.
In addition, according to the head of the company, joint work with Geely will provide access to the scale and advanced technologies of the Chinese partner, as well as establish close cooperation with Volvo.
The combined forces are currently focused on product design, whose specialists are mainly based at Daimler headquarters. Smart is due to introduce new electric models from Fortwo and Forfour by mid-year. A compact electric SUV is expected by 2022.
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