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New Smart EV delayed  (Source: autonews)
Battery production cited as reason for the delay

One of the more fuel efficient and small cars on the market today is the ForTwo. The car is made by Daimler subsidiary Smart and the third-generation electric version of that little car was supposed to come in the spring of 2012.
 
The vehicle’s debut has now been delayed until September reports AutoNews. That is a delay of three months from when the car was expected. Daimler has confirmed the change in the launch as resulting from a delay in the battery cells needed for the cars from supplier Li-Tec.
 
The delay is being cited as unspecified problems in the manufacturing process as the scale of battery cell production was ramped up.
 
"There are no technical or quality problems with the batteries," the spokeswoman said. "But we don't want to lower our sights in safeguarding quality. That's why we're accepting a delay."
 
Li-Tech is a sub-supplier of the battery packs for the cars. The main supplier is a joint venture between Daimler and German firm Evonic called Deutsche Accumotive. Li-Tech actually supplies the individual cells inside the main battery pack.
 
Once the battery issues are cleared, the car will arrive in 30 markets around the world. Smart CEO Annette Winkler cited a production volume for the new EV in the five-figure range.
 
It remains to be seen if the EV version of the ForTwo will do well in the US. The small Smart vehicle with a gasoline engine hasn’t sold well in America with sales plunging in 2010. In 2010, sales slipped below 100,000 units after selling 114,000 units in 2009.

Source: Autonews





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