Without the losses of the Smart brand, Mercedes would have posted a record operating profit of more than €4 billion for the past year but instead achieved a still significant €2.4 billion result. According to statements from DCX, restructuring of Smart and the development of its second-generation model cost more than €1.2 billion in 2005 but experts are predicting that the losses will continue for some years. However, a spokesman for DCX stated that Smart would turn a profit for the first time this year.
Things are definitely looking better. An upturn in Smart’s performance helped DCX sales rise by 2.9% last month with sales increasing by 14.7% for the Smart brand in May alone. Despite this, sales were still down by a whopping 35.1% for the first five months of the year but the new model is showing some definite progress.