In Germany, Daimler crushes a Wheego EV to defend intellectual property

Wheego Whip LiFe – Click above for high-res image gallery

We've known for years that the Wheego Whip (also used for the just-gone-on-sale Wheego LiFe) is, despite appearances, not a direct copy of the Smart Fortwo. Instead it is the electrified version of the Shuanghuan Bubble (aka the Shuanghuan Noble), which is a Chinese vehicle that is liberally based on the Fortwo. Daimler, as parent company of Smart, really doesn't like this and has, apparently, demanded that a just-imported Wheego vehicle (whether a Life or a Whip, we're not sure) be completely destroyed – using a forklift! – at the customs office in Bremerhaven, Germany.

Daimler and China Automobile Deutschland came to an agreement back in 2007 whereby CAD would not sell the Noble in Germany but that any gasoline versions could be driven on European roads. An all-electric conversion/Wheego, though, is a different story, according to Autobild, and Daimler had the car crushed to protect its intellectual property. A Wheego spokesperson tole Autobild that the car was privately imported by a customer, who's probably seriously regretting that decision today. Thanks to Tom S. for the tip!

[Source: Autobild]

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