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End of Life Recycling

A clean end

Even a smart will reach the end of its life one day. This is why smart has ensured simple disposal with vehicle take-back depots near you. Here you will find all the important information you need on returning, recycling and reusing end-of-life vehicles.


To make it as easy as possible for you to return your vehicle, smart has a comprehensive network of vehicle take-back depots. By returning your vehicle to one of our take-back depots you ensure that your vehicle is dismantled and recycled in accordance with legal requirements and that the valuable materials are recovered and subsequently used again for new products.

In this way, you make a valuable contribution to protecting our environment and improving resource efficiency. As the owner of a smart, you can return your smart to our network of vehicle take-back depots free of charge if the following conditions are met:

  • It is a passenger car with up to 9 seats or a van of up to 3.5 t.
  • The vehicle is or was registered in a country belonging to the EU for at least a month prior to its immobilisation.
  • The end-of-life vehicle must not contain any waste materials and must be complete (drive, chassis and suspension, body, catalytic converter, electronic controllers).
After handing over the vehicle and the registration documents to one of our partners, you will be given a certificate of disposal that confirms that your vehicle has been properly disposed of. You normally need this certificate as proof for the vehicle licensing agency that your vehicle has been immobilised for good.

Recycling end-of-life vehicles

As the inventor of the automobile, Daimler is aware of its great responsibility and has declared sustainable and environmentally compatible mobility to be an integral part of its corporate strategy. The environmentally compatible product design laid down in Daimler AG's environmental guidelines considers the full product lifecycle – from design to production, the product utilisation phase, disposal and recycling.

The basis for efficient vehicle recycling after the utilisation phase is the recyclability which we are continuously improving. This is the prerequisite for efficient reuse and recycling of the valuable materials by our partners.

Should you ever have to part with your vehicle, please return it to our network of vehicle take-back depots. smart organises simple and free take-back and environmentally-compatible recycling of your vehicle in accordance with legal requirements. By returning your vehicle and therefore enabling materials to be used efficiently you make a valuable contribution to closing the recycling loop and to saving all our resources.

Legal information

The EU directive 2000/53/EEC concerning the obligation to take back end-of-life vehicles was implemented in Germany with the End-of-Life Vehicles act and the accompanying End-of-Life Vehicles ordinance. These came into force on 1 July 2002.


Your smart may have experienced its best years – but that doesn't mean that it's reached the end. Thanks to state-of-the-art recycling technologies, it is possible to reuse most of the materials in the vehicle, to save valuable raw materials and to greatly relieve the strain on the environment.

The recycling process can be divided into four phases as explained below.

  1. Vehicle take-back
  2. Once you have identified your nearest vehicle take-back depot from the list provided you can return your vehicle there, complete and free of waste.

  3. Removal of service fluids
  4. All service fluids such as oils, brake fluid and coolants, windscreen washer fluid and refrigerant are removed and correctly recycled or disposed of.

  5. Disassembly
  6. In the first step in the obligatory disassembly the battery, oil filter, catalytic converter and wheels are dismantled or removed and sent for recycling. Pyrotechnical elements (e.g. airbags) are disposed of in accordance with legal requirements. After this the parts that can be reused either directly or following reconditioning are removed.

  7. Shredder
  8. The remaining body is supplied to a shredder company where it is separated into different fractions and then returned as far as possible to the materials cycle.

Design compatible with recycling

Protection of the environment is one of the main corporate objectives of the smart brand. That means sparing use of natural resources. This is why we aim to recycle more so that we have less to dispose of.

We think things through from the beginning to the end. Great importance is attached to design that is compatible with the environment and recycling right from the development stage of our vehicles. The use of unmixed materials for instrument panels, wheel arch linings and underbody panelling is a good example of this. They allow simple disassembly and high-quality materials recycling.

Furthermore, the wheel arch linings of our vehicles are made of 100% recycled plastic. The advantages are obvious: environmental compatibility and recyclability.

In the Environmental Guidelines of Daimler AG we undertake to constantly improve the environmental compatibility of our products.

We are guided by this standard every day in our endeavours to further optimise the environmental credentials of our vehicles.