The smart fortwo ed Will be Powered by Tesla Motors
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An even more interesting feature about Musk's declaration is the fact that the partnership between the two companies has existed since late 2007. Apparently, he was under a vow of silence and Daimler only let him speak about it now. "It certainly will be ready to be deployed this year - whether Daimler chooses to do that or not is up to them," Musk said of the powertrain Tesla has to supply.
Giving no further interesting details about the actual vehicle, Musk said he did not know on what market Daimler would choose to sell the electric smart. He did add that the little bugger "will cost you almost nothing to operate," failing to communicate the actual price of the future car. Some car blogs out there have mentioned a totally unrealistic price of close to $50,000, which is of course very far from the truth since no sane person would spend that much for a smart.
This surprise announcement actually gives more insight about the electric smart project currently underway. Tesla Motors being a supplier of the battery packs and chargers is one of the main reasons for the current version of the smart fortwo ed to feature lithium-ion batteries, as opposed to the sodium-nickel-chloride of the original 2007 concept.
The partnership itself is good for both parts, since Daimler AG saves some money from developing the batteries and Tesla Motors gets much needed funds to launch its next car, the model S sedan.
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