This smart SUV concept, when it goes into production, will be the first smart to be available...

This smart SUV concept, when it goes into production, will be the first smart to be available with operational leasing supplied by ALD Automotive.

Credit: smart Europe

Smart, the fully electric urban mobility brand owned under a joint venture between Daimler and Geely, will offer full operational leasing services to corporates and SMEs underwritten by ALD Automotive, rather than the Daimler captive Athlon.

This is the second OEM tie up ALD Automotive has announced this month, having agreed to supply full operational leasing services to Tesla in 16 European countries.

However, the agreement will not be operational until Q1 2023 to coincide with the launch of smart’s new premium compact SUV. When it does begin, however, the service will be fully digital via smart’s website and its retailers.

The online contracts - from credit assessment to e-signing the contract - will be managed and maintained by ALD Automotive throughout the lease period.

Initially the service will be available in Austria, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and the UK with further European countries to be added later.

Dirk Adelmann, CEO of smart Europe, said: “ALD Automotive’s broad and wide-ranging expertise and highly customer-driven mindset makes them the best partner for us in leasing services for our customers in Europe.”

John Saffrett, deputy chief executive officer of ALD added: “This partnership fully aligns with our ambitions to facilitate the energy transition and lead in the sustainable mobility revolution.”

The inclusion of smart leasing services makes smart the fifth OEM with full operational leasing supplied by Societe Generale-owned ALD Automotive, joining Ford, Tesla, Lynk & Co and Polestar in a variety of European markets.

ALD Automotive, in a conference outlining its electrification plans yesterday (September 15, 2021), said that the average CO2 emissions of its cars delivered in H1 2021 were below 100g/km for the first time ever at 99g/km.

Stéphane Renie, head of corporate social responsibility, added: “The question is no longer if, but when and how fast electrification will happen. Corporate fleets will be ahead of the curve when it comes to electrification.”

With contracts for 1.8m cars globally, ALD Automotive said that 30% of new contracts will be green cars by 2025, resulting in a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2025. By 2030, it said that 60% of all passenger car contracts would be pure BEV.