All auto — popular cars and design: Smart
Smart Automobiles is a division of Daimler AG that manufactures and markets the Smart Fortwo and Smart Forfour. The official trademarked name is stylized as «smart», with all lowercase letters. Headquartered in Böblingen, Germany, Smart has marketed a range of microcar and subcompact vehicles, with its primary assembly plants located in Hambach, France and Novo Mesto, Slovenia. Annette Winkler has served as Smart’s CEO since 2010.
Marketed in 46 countries—in Asia, North and South America, Africa, Australia and Europe—production of the Fortwo had surpassed 1.7 million units by early 2015.
The design concept for the company’s automobiles began at Mercedes in the early 1970s and in the late 1980s, associated with Swatch. After a brief period of backing by Volkswagen, the first model was launched by Daimler-Benz in October 1998. Several variants on the original design have been introduced, with the original two-seater called the Fortwo, now in its third generation and available as an electric version.
The brand name Smart derives from its early cooperative studies with Swatch and Mercedes: Swatch Mercedes ART. In its corporate branding, the company uses a lowercase logotype (i.e., smart) and a logo incorporating the letter «c» for «compact» and an arrow for «forward thinking».