A search for attitude led to Nando’s teaming up with the eye-catching Smart and they are not the only company making sure the little car attracts attention ahead of its launch in July.

A search for attitude led to Nando’s teaming up with the eye-catching Smart and they are not the only company making sure the little car attracts attention ahead of its launch in July.

The companies are advertising on the Smart vehicle as part of DaimlerChrysler South Africa’s teaser campaign.

According to Fritz van Olst, DCSA conceptualised three means of achieving its objectives during the teaser period. "Firstly, Smart was made available as rental cars exclusively through Budget Rent-a-Car. Secondly, a number of Smarts are being made available as promotional vehicles to high-profile companies. Thirdly, Smarts are being used as service courtesy cars through selected Mercedes-Benz workshops," Van Olst said.

“All three methods address the right target market, offer an extended test drive and ensure that vehicles will be seen on the roads in the major metropolitan areas.”

The Smart can accommodate two occupants and their luggage. Fuel consumption is about 4,5 litres per 100 kilometres on the open road.

Nando’s has two Smart vehicles that it is calling “Smart tjorries”. The two cars, advertising its flame-grilled chicken, even have names, “'Hot Wheels” and “'Chilli Chilli bang bang”.

“It’s a fabulous concept and it fits in with Nando’s image,” said Nando’s brand manager Paul Appleton. “Everywhere the car goes, people stare, they hoot, they wave, they move out of the way to let it pass. Someone even offered up a parking bay for a ‘Smart tjorrie’ in Camps Bay in December,” he said.

Nedbank is the latest company to join the Smart craze. The bank has acquired 10 smart vehicles that will be used primarily as an incentive to encourage top performance by the Nedbank Retail Banking Division's staff. Dentyne has also just branded seven Smart vehicles.

A select group of Mercedes-Benz service outlets in Gauteng, Durban and Cape Town are using Smarts as courtesy vehicles, but on a first-come, first-served basis.

"We are confident that by the time the campaign ends in July, we will have achieved our other objective of building up a substantial order book for Smart before its retail launch," said Van Olst.

And it seems to be working. “We had a huge response to the cars at Auto Africa and people are constantly asking when they can order one.

"We have a database of about 1 000 people who want more information on the Smart,” said DaimlerChrysler spokesman Shirle Greig.

Original article from Car