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  #16  
Old 05-24-2002, 12:40 AM
3 MB's and counting!
 
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Location: Toronto, Canada
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Here in Canada, every Bell Mobility Cellular store in the malls have a Smart car on display. I fell in love with this thing and then when I found out Mercedes makes it, I loved even more.

Notice that the front headlights resembles the new C class a bit?
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  #17  
Old 05-24-2002, 01:24 AM
Diesel Power
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I would thoroughly enjoy owning one of these. With my daily comute, it would be great to drive 600 miles a week on ~10 bux.
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  #18  
Old 05-24-2002, 01:26 AM
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hehehe... you could always buy a geo metro...
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  #19  
Old 05-24-2002, 03:39 AM
Diesel Power
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Nah, my Dad had bought two of these things. They were total crap. They had all of the solidity of a beer can. Not only that, no diesel option, which I *can* get in the Smart car.

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  #20  
Old 05-24-2002, 01:34 PM
LarryBible
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I have very little respect for these dinky little things. A fellow that I work with in Milan was serious about buying one. This was last October, I asked him what it would cost. It was before the Euro, so I don't remember how many lyre it was, but I do remember that it converted to about $18,000 ! ! ! ! ! ! !

I think that is total obscenity. He ended up buying an SLK instead. The car WOULD be handy in Milan. It is so crowded in downtown Milan that you would not believe it. For that reason, most people ride a motor scooter instead of a car.

The other thing that has really gotten my attention about Milan is that you see VERY EXPENSIVE new cars kept in the street, parallel parked every night. Its nothing to see a brand new S or E Class, parallel parked in a tight parking spot. First of all, the way they drive there, I have no idea how you can handle such a big car, and second, it seems like the car would turn to crap being parked outside all the time.

I will be SHOCKED if the Smart is ever federalized.

My $0.02,
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  #21  
Old 05-27-2002, 09:10 AM
Matt Crooke
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http://www.thesmart.co.uk/index.html?dir=see&main=see_overview.asp

The quality line up.....i would be a bit embarassed in one i have to say.
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  #22  
Old 05-27-2002, 08:34 PM
MercManiac
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I was under the impression that MBUSA was selling dealerships for SMART cars in the U.S.?

It's no big deal to get the car to U.S. specs. As far as safety, they do still sell motorcycles in the U.S.???
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  #23  
Old 05-28-2002, 03:41 AM
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The last time I was in Rome the Smart was all over the place. I think it is a great "City Car".

North Americans may be too macho for it though.
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  #24  
Old 05-28-2002, 09:48 AM
LarryBible
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I don't think the rejection by most will be because they are too macho to drive one. I think the most common reason for rejection will be practicality. Most commuters come in on freeways and sidestreets from the suburbs. For this commute, they really need a real car.

For those who work AND live in crowded downtown areas, it will have a market in spite of the fact that it costs twice as much as what it's worth.

My $0.02,
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  #25  
Old 05-28-2002, 10:04 AM
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These things can do 70 mph. What more do you want?
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  #26  
Old 05-28-2002, 10:53 AM
LarryBible
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I don't know about freeways where you are, but in my area and many other parts of the world where I've been, driving 70MPH will get you run over. If I'm going to get run over, I would like much more mass around me than one of these "cars" offers. For $18,000 there are MANY choices of cars that will provide much more comfort, safety and long term reliability.

Again, for those who do not leave the city, they might be a decent choice if the price were right.

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  #27  
Old 05-28-2002, 02:29 PM
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Larry,

I said 70 mph just to show that the Smart would have no problem on our highways. If you like speeding tickets, the Smart's maximum speed is electronically limited to 85 mph.

As regards to price, don't forget that Italians pay a 22% VAT (value added tax) on their automobiles.

The Smart may not be for you but there is definitely a market for it in North America.
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  #28  
Old 05-28-2002, 03:02 PM
LarryBible
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As I say, I do believe that there is a market in North America. I doubt that they will bother trying to sell many of them outside of NYC, Chicago, Detroit, Boston, etc.

I am going to Milan week after next and will see the person that told me $18,000. I will ask if that price was before or after tax. Even if it was after tax, that still puts the car at $14,000. This is still a lot of money for a four wheel motorcycle.

If I lived and worked in one of these urban areas, I would spend $18,000 or $19,000 on one of the new Mini's before I would spend even $12,000 on a Smart. North American cities are not NEARLY as crowded and full of narrow streets as are European cities.

Also, when you actually get into one of these tiny things, you may change your mind. The pictures in no way portray just how small these things really are.

Have a great day,
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  #29  
Old 05-28-2002, 03:53 PM
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Location: Dallas, Texas
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I have seen a cute little blue one around my neighborhood here in Dallas. Couldn't imagine what it was when I saw the Star on the hood. I'm glad this post came around as I thought I was suffering from hallucinations.
It's a GREAT idea, but not really in Dallas. We have too many Surburbans/Excursions (WAY too many, IMHO). My old SD feels small compared to some of those giants. Many of the drivers (blondes on cell phones 80% of the time) haven't learned that they are different from the sports coupes they were driving before they got an 8 passenger vehicle to haul 1.5 kids and .75 dog.
Sorry to dwell on the subject. Working in the Park Cities area of Dallas and living nearby, I see too many SUV drivers not having ANY respect to the vehicle's size on streets that were designed in the 1930s. Well, I suppose it is Texas afterall!
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  #30  
Old 05-28-2002, 03:55 PM
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Well, I like the idea of ultra-efficient commuter cars, but the Smart is redundant thanks to the CDI versions of the A-Class. The A carries four people, is capable of getting under 5L/100km's, and is easy to drive on freeway/highway.

If we in Canada were able to purchase from the same selection as in Europe, our stable would probably consist of an A-Class CDI model and a C270CDI Estate.

35 US MPG would be the worst mileage our house would see...
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