Did you know the Smart car is no longer able to get an internal combustion engine ForTwo in North America anymore? All new ForTwos sold are only available with the electric drive system. Making the city car even more of a city car.
From the outside its no real difference between this and the regular smart car that came out a few years back. Stretching out to 106 in in length it’s still as tiny as it once was. With the blue and black that we have here it mixes nicely in with the regular lineup unlike the white and green that was once offered with “green” cars. While the smart car is pretty small, the doors are quite large making ingress and egress a lot easier.
Check out these headlamps, they have an LED glow when you unlock the vehicle and a beautiful LED DRL setup glows nicely from the bottom. Sadly the headlight itself is still halogen but there’s no doubt subtle updates are making the Smart a bit prettier. Same with the back, LED taillights set off the rear corners of the car.
Inside the Smart is just as cute and basic as before. There’s nothing that stands out but there really doesn’t need to be. There’s a little gauge on the upper left on top of the dash that shows the vehicle’s charge as well consumption. All in all the vehicle certainly has a cute factor to it which I do like.
In terms of passenger comfort, it’s tolerable. Made for city streets the suspension is nice and soft but the short wheelbase makes bumps a bit more jarring than longer vehicles. What this shorter wheelbase really helps with is the maneuverability. Turn the wheel all the way and the phrase turning on a dime comes to mind. It’s quite surprising that within the width of 3 car spots you can make a full circle while some can’t even fit.
Powering the little smart is an all electric motor that puts out 80 hp an 118 lb-ft of torque. With a 17.6 kWh battery, it means it can technically have a range of just over 120 km depending on driving habits. It’s not bad when using it within a busy city however for those who have a bit more of a commute or the thought of going on the highway it can be a bit frightening. As the body is tall and narrow, large trucks that pass by does make the Smart sway just a bit to make you feel uncomfortable.
Darting around the city is what this car’s made for. It has more than enough power to get you through the day and it can out accelerate many cars in between lights to get the jump on them. Acceleration does slow above 50-60km/h as most of it’s grunt is from down low. Utilizing the power also has another downfall, battery consumption. With my week of driving while making full use of all it’s might I manage to get about 100km per charge. If going a bit easier the computer did say I can achieve about 130km but it’s a bit unsettling when the range shows 20km left.
Overall the smart car isn’t for everyone. It was never meant for people that live on the outskirts of the city. It’s for the user that will only drive within the city with access to plugs wherever they go. In Downtown Vancouver this isn’t that much of a problem as there are plenty of plugs and places where EVs are welcomed. However a bit outside the city is where we see challenges.