Hans Jurg Schar, MCC board member responsible for marketing and sales was interviewed by Luca Ciferri.
Will the Smart have a single price in Europe?
No. First we have to be competitive in the local markets. We have to follow the reality: Spain and Holland are the countries where cars are cheaper; Germany, Austria and Switzerland where they are more expensive.
Price differentiation for other cars has created a gray market. Do you fear this could happen to the Smart?
I don't think so. Before taxes, we will keep the Smart prices within the 12 percent range indicated by the EU. This will mean a maximum variation before taxes around DM1,200, which is not enough to feed the parallel market.
How will you regulate sales outside the assigned territory of a Smart dealer?
He can advertise and use direct marketing only within his assigned area. Of course he will sell the car to anyone who enters his dealership, no matter in which country the customer lives.
What about selling with the Internet?
We already have our own site, www.smart.com, where you can create your own car and - from January 1999 - also chose the Smart center you want it delivered from.