Daimler Begins Production of Electric Smart in France
After Years of Waiting...Daimler has been teasing us with the electric smart fortwo for a while. Many low-volume conversions were done, but finally, the mass-produced version is now being made at Daimler's Hambach plant in France (not Hambach in Germany...). This isn't just a hobby for Daimler; they've invested over €200 million to upgrade that factory and hope to eventually sell the electric version of the smart in dozens of markets.
Dr. Joachim Betker, Head of the smart plant in Hambach, emphasised the ground-breaking integration of the electric version in the production process: "For the first time we have realised the consistent and perfectly integrated production of models with electric drive and those with combustion engines. In production, we are now optimally utilising the smart vehicle concept’s immanent potential for different drive systems."
Check out Lloyd's review of test unit in Toronto.
"With its 55kW electric motor the smart fortwo electric drive accelerates from 0 - 60 km/h in 4.8 seconds, and with a maximum speed of 125 km/h driving pleasure is also guaranteed on urban motorways. The 17.6 kWh battery enables the urban two-seater to travel approximately 145 kilometres in city traffic without producing any local emissions. As those components each come from joint ventures with the German companies Bosch (EM-motive) and Evonik (Deutsche ACCUmotive) and as the vehicle is built in the plant in Hambach (France), the new smart fortwo electric drive is the first true European electric car.
The new sale&care model makes opting into electric mobility particularly attractive: it offers customers an opportunity to buy, finance or lease the vehicle at an attractive price and to rent the battery for a monthly fee. Purchase, financing or leasing of the vehicle including the battery is also possible."
Delivery in Germany starts in late summer, all other markets - a total of more than 30 - will follow successively.