The Detroit News is reporting that DaimlerChrysler plans to bring the small-car Smart brand to the U.S. in 2007. There has been speculation about such a move ever since DaimlerChrysler debuted — then later shelved — Smart for the U.S. at the 2005 Detroit auto show.
Smart’s models have not been selling well in Europe, and the company hopes a newly gas-thrifty America will help with profits. The Smart model most likely to come to the States, the ForTwo, gets 60 mpg.
We agree with some of the experts The Detroit News quotes: Super small cars are just beginning to catch on here, and there are already a number of successful players like Toyota, Scion, Honda and Nissan crowding the market. How will an even smaller car play with Americans, high gas prices or no?
It’ll be a game of wait and see for not only the official announcement slated for tomorrow, but also buyers’ reactions to such a tiny vehicle.
[Smart car arrives in U.S. in ’07, The Detroit News]