smart fortwo cabrio electric drive

Smart Transitions to Electric Only For North America

Smart has never really had any luck in North America. Their best year in sales was in 2014 when they sold 10,453 vehicles. Since then, sales have been steadily declining thanks to low gas prices and consumers going to crossovers and SUVs. Because of this, Smart is making a drastic decision.

Automotive News (Subscription Required) obtained a letter sent to Smart dealers that states the brand will cease selling gas-powered models by the end of this year. Starting in 2018, dealers will only sell the electric drive variant.

“Developments within the micro-car segment present some challenges for the current Smart product portfolio. Therefore, with the launch of the fourth-generation Smart ForTwo electric drive this summer, the Smart lineup will consist exclusively of the zero-emissions Smart electric-drive coupe and cabrio in the U.S. and Canada,” wrote Dietmar Exler, CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA.

Rob Moran, Mercedes-Benz spokesman tells AN that production of gas-powered models for North America will cease in April. Dealers will sell the gas models until they are gone.

The Smart Fortwo electric drive swaps the gas engine for a three-phase synchronous electric motor producing 80 horsepower and 118 pound-feet of torque. Paired with a 17.6-kWh battery pack, the electric drive has a range of 70 to 80 Miles.

Pic Credit: Smart

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