Mercedes-Benz USA has named one of its veteran retail strategists to take over the troubled Smart brand.
Tracey Matura, currently general manager of retail strategic development, was named to take over the brand a month after M-B announced it was canceling the Penske Automotive Group’s contract to distribute Smart cars in the U.S.
Matura has a tough job. Initially given Smart distribution rights in 2008, Penske had good success the first year as the car’s novelty and tiny size made it a cult favorite. But once the early adopters got their Smart cars, keeping the sales momentum became tough.