Jorge Chapa

Smart Car is Coming to the US in 2008!

by , 12/15/07

Smart Car, Daimler Chrysler, Energy Efficient Vehicle, Sustainable Vehicle, Energy Efficient Car, Tiny Vehicles, Small Vehicles, Subcompact vehicle, subcompact car, european smart car, transportation tuesday, fuel efficient, car, daimler, subcompact

The Smart Car is coming to the United States! And sooner than you might think… The little car that could, manufactured by Daimler, is expected to join the ranks of tiny eco-cars available in the US in 2008. We are excited about this development and hope that it will convince more Americans that when transportation is concerned, bigger is most certainly not better.


Smart Car, Daimler Chrysler, Energy Efficient Vehicle, Sustainable Vehicle, Energy Efficient Car, Tiny Vehicles, Small Vehicles, Subcompact vehicle, subcompact car, european smart car, transportation tuesday, fuel efficient, car, daimler, subcompact

Early reservations for the US Smart Car have just started and already people are lining up to purchase this tiny energy efficient vehicle. The Smart Car is a tiny subcompact vehicle, only about 9 feet long and 5 feet wide. The 3-cylinder engine has fantastic fuel consumption, 42 miles per gallon, and has a top speed of 90 mph. And while it is tiny – one feels as though you can lift it yourself – it is, in fact, surprisingly roomy for something that size. Though granted, your main concern would likely be what happens in the event of a crash. According to the company, the Smart Car gets a 4 star-crash rating, surprisingly good for a vehicle of its size. The Smart Car will cost between $11,000 to $17,000. It is available in three different models, including a gorgeous little convertible.

The Smart Car joins a select number of subcompact vehicles in the US. And while the market for them is still quite tiny, we hope its stylish looks and fuel efficiency will win over those looking at getting larger and less fuel-efficient vehicles.

US reservations for the Smart Car have just started and already people are lining up to purchase this tiny energy efficient vehicle. If you want a piece of the Smart action, reserve yours today at Smart USA >

+ Smart USA

Related Posts

LEAVE A COMMENT

or your inhabitat account below

Let's make sure you're a real person:


55 Comments

  1. NICHOLAS DIMEGLO March 11, 2009 at 7:40 am

    How does the crash test pan out? Are the worthy of highway driving? Why not a diesel in the USA, Canada has them? For the money iwould rather a Honda or Camry with a great track record!!!!

  2. edward i williams May 27, 2008 at 2:22 pm

    edward i williams ,365-d2 east 183 street, bronx 10458 new york, cell phone 1 718 524 3708 pleas send all information about smart car to the above address owners manual , and everything you are able to release

  3. priusguy March 26, 2008 at 12:31 am

    here is some research i did on the % premiums over smart car MSRP figures. 20-30% seems pretty reasonable:

    http://pricehub.blogspot.com/2008/02/smart-price-premiums-over-msrp.html

  4. Sideways: A Smart Art P... March 22, 2008 at 4:38 pm

    [...] the States wait in anticipation for the arrival of the Smart Car, the Smart Car brand have released ‘Sideways: A Smart Art Project’, which [...]

  5. Inhabitat » Smart... March 19, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    [...] official that the eco-chic Smart Car is coming to the USA in 2008, and to add to this momentum, Smart is releasing a gorgeous creative anthology, [...]

  6. Jac March 5, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    with more production and popularity, the price will go down a little more. I’m waiting for Smart ForFour. I remembered the boot was a little small. My friend had the pleasure of driving it for a month. She only filled up the tank once, before returning it. And she drives everywhere! It’s quite roomy, when facing the windscreen, but if you look behind, the compactness hits you.

  7. Jason February 28, 2008 at 9:57 pm
  8. monkoverboard February 9, 2008 at 7:44 pm

    Smartcar, schmartcar. $11K+ for a 2D2S? $2.5K for a 4D4S sounds more appealing to me. Sure, the Indian Tata Nano will only have 30 HP/ 623 cc, 1/3rd the power and 2/3 the engine, but it is will be greener by a long shot. Maybe some of you out there think that $11K is pocket change, but the green I am really thinking about is in my pocketbook.

    With the average college graduate making $45K a year and the average single family house costing $220K, the average person is paying (on average) nearly half of his/her monthly income on the mortgage. Figure in that $500+ per month car note for two cars and insurance and the (average) American is barely breaking even.

    In this world (or at least this country) gone mad, there is nearly one whole care on the road for every man, woman and child, in the US. Yes we need smaller, compact cars, but at what price? Come on Tata!

  9. steven January 30, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    I have the 2008 Smart car. Having problem with mileage not as good as claimed, taking it in tomorrow to be checked out. It has as much room for driver and pasager as my bonniville (i’m 5’10 250lbs and its comfortable). It doesn’t ridelike a small car. I’ve hit 145 km per hour in it.
    My question is why can’t we get the smart car roadster here in Canada. It looks hot! sort of like a porche and corvette mix. and gets 68 miles to the gallon. But merecedes says they won’t allow it in north america, even though it meets canadian standards!!!
    Big rip off!
    Cost in europe in equal to $20.000 canadian.

    PS they are looking at electic hybrid in next couple years.

  10. Meg January 28, 2008 at 11:57 am

    Typical, America always gets the really useful and efficient cars late. Europe has cars going at 50+ mpg while 40 is the best we boast.
    Granted, their gas is more expensive.

  11. Susan Mayhew January 23, 2008 at 6:32 pm

    Please let me know where I can buy a smartcar – I live in Boulder CO

  12. Gardian January 15, 2008 at 10:09 am

    Did you know that the Canadian version with Diesel gets 70 mpg. My Geo metro gets 40 mpg. Smart is not doing us any favors. And where is the smartFor4, where do the kids ride.
    Demand a Diesel and smartfor4.

  13. chahdch December 29, 2007 at 1:31 am

    Ridiculously over priced.

  14. Wee Anne December 21, 2007 at 10:24 am

    I live in Glasgow,Scotland and they are All over the city. I just aquired one today and I’m over the moon. Delivery date 28th of December. I am soooooo excited!!

  15. mary December 20, 2007 at 10:09 pm

    Joshua,

    Everytime we go into the dealer for our car wash, we make it a point to ask a different salesperson about the future of Mercedes going green. Every salesperson is dumb founded. If Dailmler markets the Smart car under the Mercedes name, I’ll be surprised.

    Does anyone know what the target market has been in Europe, Canada, etc. for this car?

  16. Michael December 20, 2007 at 5:34 pm

    I wonder, why European version are not sold as well.
    We have them in Turbo-Diesel and in a Brabus tuned-up version with 100Hp.
    In Italy and London they run on battery for about 150 miles per charge. Accelerate like an electric scooter, beat any Porsche!!!

    And in Germany I saw a hybrid ForTwo.

    Makes me guess that we European keep the best stuff for us (at $8 per gallon we have to…!)

  17. Joshua December 20, 2007 at 5:59 am

    “Green Guy –You are an exception.”………Mary, he actually isn’t an exception;)

    I drive two very large S Class Mbz’s (which I dearly love & will never get rid of even though they’re pigs on fuel), & I’d drive a Smart in a hot minute especially if it had diesel common rail & would use B100. I appreciate the design, the simplicity of what they’ve done, & the creative process that went into producing it. The Smart is a different way of thinking & the timing is right. I only hope they don’t water the end product down, that’d be a shame.

    As for the Newport Mbz dealer, they seriously have their heads jammed in the sand, personal experience tells me that Mbz sales people aren’t always too terribly well informed. Mbz has an incredibly long & innovative history of firsts in the automobile industry for production cars, e.g.-fuel injection, abs brakes, first luxury car with a diesel engine, etc. It’s not in their corporate culture or dna to be left by the wayside, Toyota or otherwise. I can only hope that whomever you spoke to at Newport wasn’t symptomatic of a consensus of thinking that characterizes mbusa’s approach to selling cars in the u.s.

  18. Bryn December 19, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    They may get about the same gas mileage, but a new Prius cost more – $21,100 MSRP
    http://www.toyota.com/prius/index.html

  19. Naomi December 19, 2007 at 5:26 pm

    First saw the Smart Car in London when I was there in 2000. Loved it and then and just recently saw one on the streets in my own area.

    My only serious lament is why on earth this couldn’t be an electric car instead?!?!?! Then the issue of miles per *gallon* would be moot altogether, right?

    Since I am looking to get ahold of an electric car myself… I so wish it could be this car. Because, you are right (Ron Gaus) they are SO CUTE!!!! :-) My commute is under five miles a day, each way,… so, it’d be the perfect car for me!

  20. ms meg December 18, 2007 at 7:56 pm

    The perfect tall girl car. I am saying this as a taller lady.

  21. mary December 17, 2007 at 5:50 pm

    Green Guy –You are an exception.

    We too are a family of Mercedes as well as Lexus owners.The Newport Mercedes sales people claim that there are no plans in the future for hybrids or other fue-altered vehicles. The Lexus sales people say that Toyota/Lexus are the leaders in the innovation of mass-produced fuel-efficient cars. So, I believe, most people in this market are taking a “wait til the best car comes out” approach. Prius is close but no (mass-high-end) cigar.

  22. greenguy December 17, 2007 at 5:07 pm

    The last poster couldn’t be less on the money. I have a Mercedes SL500 2003 luxury 2 seater and would buy a Smart Car in a second. Why? Because you have to walk the walk, and not just talk the talk. I’m willing to give up luxury to get a 4x increase in fuel efficency and fit into any parking space on the block… it makes sense for the environment, my wallet, space conservation and overcrowding, etc etc etc. There are people out there who will make this choice, I’m not alone.

  23. Willofgod December 17, 2007 at 4:58 pm

    It is going to hurt them a lot that they are forging diesal… kills the people who want to mod to biodiesal… kills the mpg…. kills the reliability….

  24. mary December 17, 2007 at 4:30 pm

    How about mass producing something that doesn’t look like a kid’s toy. The target market ( in California) for this car seems to appeal to the “hippy”or the teen type. I don’t see anyone downscaling from Mercedes to Mattel.

  25. KeithM December 17, 2007 at 4:16 pm

    This is the first time smart will be sold in the USA. What you have been seeing is grey market cars converted to US specification till now. Also this is the first year of a completely redesigned vehicle, new wheelbase, engine, length etc., unless you went to a demonstration (or the venice store) you have not seen the 2008 smart. And for comparing milage to their civic etc., EPA estimates for the smart exceed ANY gasoline “non-hybrid” car sold in the USA.

  26. heather December 17, 2007 at 1:38 pm

    Like many of the other commenters I say we’ve been seeing these in the US for about a year now. At least in California. And I know, I know…California…but I live in a small town in California and we have a dealer here. So I guess, like usual, it’s just the midwest that is stuck in the slow lane. And I feel I can honestly say that having recently relocated from an entire lifetime in the midwest. And being from Detroit, I can honestly say, you may see a couple there, but I’d be surprised if you saw more than four on the roads there ever.

  27. chuck December 17, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    i bought mine in salinas love 40 + mile to the gallon

  28. csven December 16, 2007 at 2:36 pm

    “This car is so little and so cute! But it seems it is mostly for women…”

    … and not for average-sized men (say 5′-11″, 165lbs) sufficiently secure in their masculinity and sexual orientation to not be concerned whether others perceive it as an effeminate mode of transportation?

    Is there a chart somewhere outlining which cars are properly “male”? Apparently I missed the memo that I needed a particular car to define who I am.

  29. josh December 16, 2007 at 1:22 pm

    they’ve been available around the world for ages…slowpokes :D

  30. Jeremy December 16, 2007 at 12:05 pm

    I bought a 2006 SMART fortwo. The car has had some issues but the worst part, at least here in Canada, is the service. They are sold by Mercedes. If you live in Calgary don’t even bother going to Hyatt; the service manager has too be the worse customer sevice person I have ever dealt with in my life. Plus, they charge you $300 for an oil change! That is the average for every SMART dealership across Canada! What a rip! And until recently you couldn’t take the car to someplace like a “Jiffy Lube” or “Mr. Lube” because the oil has to be sucked out from the top of the engine and these 3rd party oil change companies didn’t have the “key” to tell the car that the oil has been changed. I am seriously thinking of selling this thing. I warn anyone wanting to buy one; watch out!

  31. Speedmaster December 16, 2007 at 9:03 am

    I like it, I hope it does well.

  32. melissa December 16, 2007 at 8:31 am

    We have them in Jackson, MS as well.

  33. Dragos December 16, 2007 at 6:07 am

    This car is so little and so cute! But it seems it is mostly for women…
    ________________________
    http://www.factscollection.com

  34. Hishaam December 16, 2007 at 2:52 am

    I’d have to disagree when it says bigger is not necessarily better. There’s this guy who can change your engine to diesel and does something else (corn oil?) that boosts your engine power to 1000 horse power and give you good mileage (around 40mpg). He does it for large SUV’s and Trucks which average out to 15mpg. He’s trying to prove that just because you want good gas mileage, you don’t have to drive a small cramped car. He drives a large escalade truck, and is trying to prove his point. They interviewed him on TV, i’ll find the link and post it. Though for right now, I guess the SmartCar is one of the better things that could help the environment right now. There are many disadvantages to a large car compared to driving a small coupe.

  35. Brad December 16, 2007 at 2:39 am

    Yes it’s a great car, it sure is a shame they’re not offering the turbodiesel version in the USA (as they do everywhere else in the world). As others have said, you might as well buy a Prius or a VW TDI for more room and better fuel economy. If they offered the diesel version in the SMART, I would be much more persuaded to buy one because 65 MPG sure is better than the 40mpg that they currently get. For a city car though, it really can’t be beat because of it’s small, nimble size.

  36. esv December 16, 2007 at 2:23 am

    They’ve been here in South Africa for years as well

  37. Ron Gaus December 16, 2007 at 12:05 am

    I have some comments based upon 20 months of selling these guys in the US.

    Though most folks in the US have no clue what these little “smart cars” are like, they’ve been in Europe and around the world since 1998. Over 850,000 sold. Designed by Swatch. Safety-engineered and performance-engineered by Mercedes, it was an unlikely marriage of modern style and proud history of auto manufacturing. Though these new smart cars will be sold in America in mass in 2008, their older brother has been with us about 16 months. In 2003, an auto converter became frustrated by Mercedes’ refusal to bring the smart car to the US since 1998. He went to the Department of Transportation and EPA and asked for permission to change the European models to meet US safety and emissions standards. After three years of work, he was granted that approval and began selling the Euro Design smart cars in April, 2006. Just two months later, Mercedes announced that they had changed their minds and would introduce an Americanized smart car in 2008. They will be distributed through Penske Automotive Group, not Mercedes. The 1000 converted models are now almost all on the streets across the country, but their selling prices are significantly higher than the 2008 models. Though the entry level smarts will be offered in 2008 at $11,590 according to their press releases, the currently available higher end converted smarts are at $26,900. The high cost of conversion, as well as the shipping and import costs from Europe forced this higher price.

    Still, the owners of these cars have all shared their common feedback… there is no car, at any price, that will attract the positive attention from passers-by, than the smart car. It is not the miles/gallon. It is certainly not the price. It is the unique style and design, so different from any car on the road, that makes this car magical. As magical as the only prior car in history to bring these smiles to this country… the fifties Beetle. The new ones in 2008 will share this attraction with their older, but littler brother. Converted smarts are 8′-3″. The new ones are 7″ longer. Current ones have Mercedes engines. New ones have Mitsubishi’s and are more powerful. The looks, however, will cause the same smiles. Get ready for this phenomenon, America. When you see one in person, you’ll understand. There is no way to understand it until then. Over 40,000 folks have put down $99 to get in line for the new smarts. To add your name to the list, go to http://www.smartUSA.com. Get ready to smile. Smart cars will change America, one smile at a time. I am not connected with smartUSA in any way, just an excited supporter of this little smart car!

    Ron Gaus, aSmartCar.com

  38. darkman December 15, 2007 at 10:34 pm

    We have had them in Australia for some time too.

  39. stevejust December 15, 2007 at 9:53 pm

    Yawn…a car half the size of a Prius that gets the same gas mileage… as… a Prius.

    And before anyone goes pointing out the @$10,000 price difference, I drive an 04 hybrid civic I paid $18,600 for new. And it’s twice the car as a smart, and gets the same gas mileage. The extra seats and ability to put a roof rack on it for my bikes are worth the extra $4k if you ask me.

    The Smart isn’t especially efficient, it’s just small.

  40. spineemike December 15, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    A guy at my work in Doylestown, PA has one.

  41. Pat December 15, 2007 at 9:34 pm

    11-17 thousand seems like a hell of a lot of money for such a small that is supposed to be economical. I could imagine paying 6-8 thousand. until then I’ll ride my bike, or drive a used car.

  42. GrangerFX December 15, 2007 at 9:22 pm

    I think that for that kind of money, I would rather get a used Prius. It is much roomier, safer and gets better gas milage. I would be a bit worried about driving something as small as the Smart Car on a freeway with huge trucks. They would squash it like a bug.

  43. Justme December 15, 2007 at 8:44 pm

    They actually already are selling them for a little while , at least here in Southern California
    In fact I just saw one on my way back home from the grocery store (in Los Angeles).
    And there is a Smart store here in Venice on Abbot Kinney, it’s interesting as this is a regular small store in a shopping street (so no typical car dealer sort of affair)

  44. Marcel December 15, 2007 at 8:33 pm

    This is a brilliant little car. I’ve been driving the company Smart for ~6 months now. It’s cheap, low maintenance, fun to drive and it handles quite well. Here in Holland you see tons of young people driving these things. Especially bigger companies lease these cars by the hundreds. I’m hoping America will embrace these cars, it’d make New York a lot less crowded ;-)

  45. CCNA Discovery December 15, 2007 at 8:31 pm

    Seems like an interesting car, but I doubt my brother would fit in there. He’s a little too big.

  46. Katie December 15, 2007 at 8:21 pm

    My family has already pre-ordered one. My father saw them when he came over to Europe to visit me last summer, and registered right when he got back. We’re pretty excited. It will be great for running errands around town and most of the other things we do.

  47. MurrayC December 15, 2007 at 8:15 pm

    Yep. We’ve had them here in Canada too for a few years now.

  48. Jason December 15, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    Its already available in the us. atleast in the colorado market its probably been here a year if not more

  49. Tony Smith December 15, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    We have these in canada, infact the main dealer is right by my office. Having had them by me for at least 3 or 4 years. After 2 or 3 years they sound like broken rc toys.

  50. vas is das here? December 15, 2007 at 8:04 pm

    Oh really… well, that’s interesting indeed.

  51. killboy.com December 15, 2007 at 8:03 pm

    Slap a Hayabusa motor back there and you’ve got an instant wheelie-machine!

  52. Bob S December 15, 2007 at 7:56 pm

    They are avail here in Oregon and have been for awhile. http://www.carrauto.com/

  53. rek December 15, 2007 at 7:54 pm

    We’ve had them in Canada for years. The SmartForTwo too.

  54. HauteNature December 15, 2007 at 7:18 pm

    This is interesting to me because there are already several of them in Boulder Colorado. I am wondering if the owners had them specially imported themselves or what? I thought because of this that they were already available in the US market.

  55. diego December 15, 2007 at 6:16 pm

    Interesting, it has been available in Mexico since 2002.

  • Read Inhabitat

  • Search Categories

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

  • Browse by Keyword

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
What are you looking for? (Solar, HVAC, etc.)
Where are you located?