As expected, the new four-seat vehicle that Daimler AG's Smart division is will start selling later this year will still be pretty darn short. Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche, speaking at the Mercedes-Benz parent company's annual press conference, disclosed a few details about both the next-generation Smart ForTwo and the new Smart ForFour, according to World Car Fans.
Two years after announcing they would develop a new generation of the Smart Fortwo together, sharing drivetrain and platform technology, Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler and Renault have reportedly cut the cord, and Smart will go it alone.
Still in the testing phases of the next-generation Smart Fortwo and the new Forfour model, Smart could also be planning a new crossover to reach into a more mainstream vehicle segment. According to Auto Express, soon after the redesigned Fortwo arrives in 2014, the Smart lineup will grow to include the other two models by 2015.
In the U.S., we've come to know the Smart brand just for its ForTwo, but other markets have seen a wider variety of models from the Daimler brand including the Smart ForFour that was produced from 2004 through 2006. This bigger vehicle from Smart added two extra doors and a rear seat for some passenger space. While we've already seen spy photos for the next ForTwo, judging by these spy shots of a stretched-wheelbase test mule, Smart is hard at work developing a next-generation ForFour as well.
Daimler chief executive officer Dieter Zetsche admitted yesterday that his company's Smart brand was in trouble without a small car partner. Luckily, that's just what he got in the Nissan-Renault announcement. Now that Smart's future is protected, speculation is turning to the revived Smart Forfour (previous generation pictured), which we've heard about for years. Zetsche has told Automotive News that a four-seat Smart will likely be sold in the U.S. once the new triangular partnership develops
According to an unknown source speaking to Reuters, the Renault board of directors has called an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday, April 6th, to discuss plans to enter into an agreement with German automaker Daimler. As was the case when Renault teamed up with Japanese automaker Nissan, there will reportedly be an exchange of stock, but not nearly at the same level as Renault's 44-percent stake in Nissan.
According to an unnamed source speaking to Reuters, the Renault board of directors has called an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday, April 6th, to discuss plans to enter into an agreement with German automaker Daimler. As was the case when Renault teamed up with Japanese automaker Nissan, there will reportedly be an exchange of stock, but not nearly at the same level as Renault's 44-percent stake in Nissan.
According to Manager Magazine from Germany, Mercedes has approached Renault to cooperate in the development of a new small car. Although the conversations have just started, the rumor is that smart would work on a four-seat car with Renault. This would be smart's second attempt to develop such a model, after the huge fiasco now-dead forfour (pictured). That model, shown above, was codeveloped with Mitsubishi and shared its underpinnings with the Colt. Rumors of a new version of the forfour are n
According to Germany's Manager-Magazin, Mercedes-Benz has approached Renault about cooperating in the development of a new small car. Although conversations have just started, it seems that Smart could once again have a four-seat car in its lineup.
The SMART car lineup has been trimmed from three models to just one after the cancellation of the forfour and roadster models. So the future profitability of the brand rests on the tiny fenders of the fortwo, which will be coming to the U.S. in 2008. WhatCar? is reporting that the tiny two-seater will be rehashed before it makes its American debut. As you can see from this rendering, the overall look may be largely unchanged, with the biggest difference being the new headlights and front fascia.
The end of June saw the end of production for the SMART forfour that was produced through a joint collaboration between Mitsubishi and DaimlerChrysler. The forfour was produced at Mitsusbishi's facility in the Netherlands where the Colt will continue to be made. An engine plant in Germany that was jointly operated by both companies will be handed over to DaimlerChrysler.