The internets are abuzz with word that the recent partnership between Mercedes-Benz and Renault may allow the the long dead Smart Roadster to be revived. The folks at Autocar report that a source within Smart says the company has had its eyes on bringing the roadster back to market for awhile now. Evidently, the purveyor of pint-sized transportation is interested in branching out from its city car roots – something that the recent partnership with Renault just might facilitate. Renault has
smart used to have a model called the Roadster (and the Roadster coupé), which wasn't too much of a commercial success. The model wasn't ugly and had decent enough performance with its small 3-cyl engine thanks to its low weight. Still, smart only sold a little more than 43,000 units in the two years (2003-2005) that it was available.
Project Kimber, the U.K. group that purchased the manufacturing rights to the Smart Roadster, announced this week that it will locate its production facility in Wales. After relocating the Roadster's production line from the Smart factory to Kimber's as yet unnamed site in Wales, the group plan to begin production by mid-2007.
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