The End of the Smart Car in the US
The Smart Car seemed like such a good idea, but it never caught on in the United States. The car, an electric called Fourtwo, was the only model still available in the states and will be discontinued after the 2019 model year. Company officials said slow sales and the high cost of preparing the car for American standards, were the reasons for ending sales in the U.S. and in Canada.
The last Smart Car was built by Daimler, and the company stopped selling the gasoline version at the end of 2017. The FourTwo, as the name suggests, held just two people, and would go about 60 miles on an electrical charge. It can be charged from zero to 100 percent in three hours, has a single-speed transmission and rear-wheel drive.
A Car For the City
It is a car made for the city, so the relatively short range is not a big problem. It will go up to 80 miles per hour and starts very fast, but takes 11 seconds to get to 60. In the city, you may not be going 60 much, so it may not matter.
The FourTwo is fairly light but has stabilizers to keep you on the road. The car is just 106 inches long, making it easy to park almost anywhere. It has a turning circle of 22.8 feet, which no other car has. Cars remaining on lots are still available in the United States, but at the end of the year, there will be no more. Mercedes-Benz, part of the parent company, said dealerships will continue to service the electric and gas models.
The small car, smaller than a U.S. compact, is designed for narrow streets and alleyways, and for small parking spaces. Most American roads were built for larger cars, but the ability to park in a small space was still valuable to people in big cities. The FourTwo starts at $24,650. It is a very economical car, as all you have to do is plug it in and charge the batteries. The 2019 version comes as a coupe and a convertible.
When it was introduced in the United States in 2008 about 25,000 of the cars were sold. Sales have dropped fast since then, with only 1,276 selling in all of 2018.