Daimler Gears Up New Smart Electric Car
With production of the second generation electric Smart just starting at the new Smart Electric Drive production line in Hambach, France, it looks like Daimler is ramping up its marketing strategy. At least, that is what these spy shots (more photos overlead) of the Smart ForTwo Electric Drive making filming runs past famous Berlin landmarks would indicate.
Here is a quiz to test if you are a hard-core electric car buff: whose batteries power the new Smart Electric Drive?
Tesla Batteries in Daimler Smart Car
Answer: Thanks to Daimler buying a 10% stake electric car leader Tesla Motors, the Smart Electric Drive second generation benefits from Tesla Lithium-Ionen batteries with 14 kWh. In addition to offering high reliability, long life, and shorter charging times, the lithium-ion battery can be charged from a household power outlet. The Smart can cover 114 km (70 miles) range with a full charge.
First Cars Rolling Out
The production line in Hambach started up just this month. Hambach celebrated the tenth anniversary of the Smart ForTwo by turning out the millionth combustion engine vehicle in 2008 before fitting up to produce the Smart Electric Drive.
Mobility Under the Microscope
The first thousand cars will go to people participating in various European mobility projects. These will join a hundred first generation electric Smart cars cruising around London as part of a demonstration project for the reliability and benefits of electric cars in urban use.
Smart Electric Drive for All
Smart ForTwo Electric Drive models for the everyman will be available through the Smart sales network beginning in 2012.
More on Electric Smart, Daimler and Tesla:Berlin Announces Plans for World's Largest Community Electric Car Infrastructure
Daimler Buys a 10% Stake in Electric Car Maker Tesla Motors
Second-Generation Smart Electric Drive Production Begins in November (With Some Tesla Under the Hood)
Detroit Auto Show 2009: Smart Shows Electric Drive Fortwo
Video: Test Driving an Electric Smart Car
The Smart EV: Coming Soon to the Public?