The gasoline Smart ForTwo has been canceled just two model years into its current generation. Smart, a subsidiary of Mercedes-Benz’s U.S. arm, told dealers it would pull the plug on the gas version of its microcar — which went from an abysmal earlier effort to a far better, if still flawed, redesign — after the 2017 model year.
Sales of the Smart had never been especially strong in North America, with drivers in Germany, Italy, and China all taking more to the tiny car. Sales of Smart cars worldwide – which includes models not available in the US and Canada – hit 144,000 units in 2016; of that, just 6,211 were sold in the US.
Don’t expect the electric Smarts to start competing with Tesla, though. The battery powerd ForTwo cranks out 74 horsepower and takes 11.5 seconds to hit 60 mph. It is, however, still rear-wheel drive. Which should help make it a little fun around town.
Moran did not specify whether the electrified transition would affect the 85 Smart dealerships in the U.S.
Smart released its 2017 models went in early December last year, but it still has 2016 models in dealer inventories. The automaker is running a special leasing promotion offering its 2016 coupes for as little as $89 a month.