Daimler Plans Smart Car Brand Expansion With Geely

Daimler Plans Smart Car Brand Expansion With Geely

Daimler is hoping to supercharge production of its smart car brand by teaming up with China’s Geely car giant.

The venture will see the automakers assume equal ownership of the smart brand that has become synonymous with small city cars and manufacture a new range of its EVs at a purpose-built factory in China, selling them globally from 2022. A joint statement said these EVs would be styled by the worldwide Mercedes-Benz Design network and engineered at Geely’s global engineering centers. It added that some of them would fall within Europe’s larger car supermini B-segment, a new market for smart.

Production of Daimler’s current smart cars will continue at its plants in Hambach, France and Novo Mesto, Slovenia, until the new vehicles are launched in 2022. The Hambach plant will also produce a compact EV for Mercedes-Benz under its EQ brand. The joint venture is due to be finalized by the end of this year.

Daimler board chairman Dieter Zetsche said the automakers would “jointly design and develop the next generation of smart electric cars that combine high-quality production and known safety standards for sale both in China and globally. In the future, we are looking forward to working with all partners to sustain our success in China and worldwide”.

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