Good idea? Smart-clone importers violate court injunction at Bologna Auto Show

Ready for some more on the 1.1-liter Shuanghuan Bubble, the car also known as the Shuanghuan Noble (but everyone outside of China knows it as the Smart car clone)? Automotive News Europe's Luca Ciferri went to see the Bubble at the Bologna auto show and says (subs req'd) that even though Martin Motors violated a court injunction by showing the car there, they did the right thing. Now he's seen the differences between the two with his own eyes and believes that no one will easily mistake one for the other, he writes, adding:

I feel it is wrong to consider this car an exact copy of the Smart ForTwo. One significant difference between the Bubble and the ForTwo is that the Bubble's cabin is longer and less bulky. One way to make sure the Bubble looks different from the ForTwo is if it is only sold in a single body color in Europe.

He also adds that, while the Bubble is certainly not as high-quality a vehicle as the Smart, "Maybe Daimler's effort to keep the Bubble off the road will actually help by giving Shuanghuan time to fix the problems before launching it here." Wouldn't that be just the oddest twist to this entire saga?

[Source: Automotive News Europe]

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