smart – Automobile Magazine http://www.automobilemag.com No Boring Cars! | Reviews, Auto Shows, Lifestyle Sun, 26 Mar 2017 09:11:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.4 Smart Ditches Gas-Powered Models in Favor of EVs in the U.S. http://www.automobilemag.com/news/smart-will-stop-selling-gas-powered-cars-u-s/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/smart-will-stop-selling-gas-powered-cars-u-s/#respond Tue, 14 Feb 2017 21:30:50 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1110450 Smart will no longer offer gasoline-powered cars in the U.S. after the 2017 model year, Mercedes-Benz has confirmed. The pint-sized cars will only be available in EV form. The company didn’t issue a formal press announcement, but dealers were informed of the decision  Monday, Mercedes-Benz told Automobile. In a letter to dealers, Mercedes said, “Developments...

The post Smart Ditches Gas-Powered Models in Favor of EVs in the U.S. appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Smart will no longer offer gasoline-powered cars in the U.S. after the 2017 model year, Mercedes-Benz has confirmed. The pint-sized cars will only be available in EV form.

The company didn’t issue a formal press announcement, but dealers were informed of the decision  Monday, Mercedes-Benz told Automobile. In a letter to dealers, Mercedes said, “Developments within the microcar segment present some challenges for the current Smart product portfolio. Therefore, with the launch of the fourth-generation Smart Fortwo electric drive this summer, the Smart lineup will consist exclusively of the zero emissions Smart electric-drive coupe and cabrio in the U.S. and Canada.”

2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side in motion 04

Smart began selling the Fortwo in the U.S. for the 2008 model year before introducing an electric model for 2011. The company is a low-volume player in the U.S. where it sold just 6,211 vehicles last year.

Despite its small size, the gas-powered Fortwo doesn’t impress in fuel economy. It tops out at a respectable 33/39/35 city/highway/combined, but cars such as the Honda Civic can do better while offering more space.

Mercedes seems confident that the decision fits the company’s goals for the future. “Electric is central to our long-term powertrain strategy in the U.S., and the Smart Fortwo electric drive will play an important role in carrying this forward,” the letter said.

After this year, Smart drivers will still be able to service their gas-powered Fortwos at authorized dealers. Smart currently has 85 dealers in the U.S., and Mercedes admits it’s unclear if that number will decrease now that the gas cars have been cut from the lineup, Automotive News reports.

The post Smart Ditches Gas-Powered Models in Favor of EVs in the U.S. appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/smart-will-stop-selling-gas-powered-cars-u-s/feed/ 0
First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo ED http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-ed-first-drive-review/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-ed-first-drive-review/#respond Thu, 24 Nov 2016 12:00:06 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=1022497 Automakers beware. As the Chevrolet Bolt begins rolling off transports and into dealerships, it’s becoming clear that there’s an electric-vehicle paradigm shift underway. If your battery-powered car doesn’t have a range of 200-plus miles and cost around $30,000, you’d better have a convincing alternative narrative. This is more than likely why Mercedes-Benz brought us to...

The post First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo ED appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Automakers beware. As the Chevrolet Bolt begins rolling off transports and into dealerships, it’s becoming clear that there’s an electric-vehicle paradigm shift underway. If your battery-powered car doesn’t have a range of 200-plus miles and cost around $30,000, you’d better have a convincing alternative narrative.

This is more than likely why Mercedes-Benz brought us to the heart of Miami to test its 2017 Smart Fortwo ED. (That’s Electric Drive and, yes, we’ve all had fun with ED’s other meaning.) No winding mountain highways this time; we’re in for busy city traffic instead. Catchphrases like “urban mobility” and “local emissions-free driving” highlight the product presentation. There’s no talk of how the Fortwo ED handles in corners, just that it’s “agile and lively,” with a tight, 22.8-foot turning circle. The theme is decidedly urban-centric.

Here are the basic Smart Fortwo ED facts: Range is 75-80 miles. Its 0-to-60-mph time is a leisurely 11.4 seconds for the fixed-roof model and 11.7 for the cabrio. Top speed is 81 mph. Price will be around $25,000, though tax credits could drop that number to as low as $18,000, depending on where you live. Recharge time when plugged into a 120-volt/12-amp connection is 16.5 hours to full and 13 hours to 80 percent — well beyond a good night’s sleep. Install a 240-volt/32-amp home box and that falls to 3 hours and 2.5 hours, respectively. There is no Level 3 charging. Warranty on the battery is eight years or 60,000 miles.

2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter in motion 1

To give you a sense of the third-generation Smart’s size, it’s 1.1-inch taller and 1.4-inch wider, but a full 3 feet shorter front to rear than a Fiat 500e, its closest competitor in the compact EV space. That added width and improved styling make the current model look more like, well, a real car — albeit a city cute one.

Contrasting with its colorful body panels is Smart’s vaunted Tridion safety cell.

Formed with a mix of ultra-high strength, hot-formed, and maximum-strength multiphase steels, it creates a sturdy cage around the car’s two occupants. (Check out the YouTube videos of the Smart versus S-Class crash tests. Impressive stuff.) Because in a car as small as the Smart Fortwo, you’ll not only have some range anxiety if you stray too far from your urban core, you could also suffer from some safety anxiety when that giant truck in the next lane suddenly swerves in front of you.

There is also a high-strength steel cocoon protecting the 330-pound, 17.6-kWh lithium-ion battery pack centrally located under the car, helping to lower its center of gravity. Inside the pack are 96 pouch cells encased in 32 liquid temperature controlled boxes. Output from the battery routes to a three-phase synchronous motor and single-stage transmission mounted under the luggage compartment. For reverse, the motor just spins in the opposite direction. The combo produces a modest 80 horsepower and 118 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels.

The Smart Fortwo ED glides away from the curb quickly and quietly with the first punch of the throttle given that its torque is available from 0 rpm. It doesn’t so much accelerate as it does scoot. As with many electric cars, it handily jumps from 15 to 25 mph with an ease that works nicely in city traffic. Guy in the right lane dogging it? Scoot, you’re in front of him. In tight, congested situations, the size and agility of the Fortwo become handy tools. Steering and brake feel fit right in — light and immediate. Given the minimal daily mileage requirements of many urbanites, this is where the Smart’s urban-centric storyline works. For the hypermiler set, there’s an ECO mode that trims top speed, limits acceleration, and maxes regeneration.

2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive seats 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive dashboard 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive battery charge level 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive cargo space

Inside, the Fortwo is reasonably spacious for a pair of 6-footers, with solid, comfortable seats. You face a multi-function steering wheel and a hooded instrument panel. On the top left of the dash is a gauge that spells out energy use and battery capacity and our test cars had Smart’s optional 7-inch navi/infotainment touchscreen setup. All in all, it’s an environment that’s more usable and livable than it would appear to be from the outside. As you’d expect, cargo space is minimal but big enough for a couple of small bags.

Naturally, Smart offers an app that lets you control functions, such as when the battery is charged to having the car’s interior pre-heated or cooled while the ED is plugged in, which helps save range. And given that Smart is a division of Mercedes, the option list for the Fortwo is extensive, with much of it having to do with colors of the body panels and the safety cell.

You’ll have a chance to sample the 2017 Fortwo ED next spring if you like the hardtop or come summer should you prefer the cabrio. While a Chevy Bolt makes a lot more sense if you live in Lolo, Montana, or Marfa, Texas, in big cities like Los Angeles, Atlanta, or Miami, the Smart could be the, um, smarter alternative, especially given its price and attributes.

2017 Smart ForTwo ED Specifications

On Sale: Spring/Summer 2017 (coupe/cabriolet)
 Price: $25,000 (est) (before tax credits)
 Engine: Three-phase synchronous electric motor/80 hp, 118 lb-ft
 Transmission: Constant ratio
 Layout: 2-door, 2-passenger, rear-engine, RWD coupe or cabriolet
 EPA Mileage:  N/A
 L x W x H: 106.1 x 65.5 x 61.2 in
 Wheelbase: 73.7 in
 Weight: 2,200 lb (est)
 0-60 MPH: 11.4/11.7 sec (coupe/cabriolet)
 Top Speed: 81 mph
2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive cabin 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive decal 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter in motion 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive decal 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive cabin 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive climate control 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive instrument panel 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive shifter 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive headlamp 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side profile 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive infotainment 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter in motion 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive steering wheel controls 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive wheel 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive charge percentage 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive charge 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 05 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter 02 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front side 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter in motion 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarter in motion 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarters 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarters 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front three quarters 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive front threee quarter in motion 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive interior view 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive inteiror view 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear end 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear side in motion 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear side in motion 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive screen 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive screen 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarters 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive rear three quarter in motion 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side in motion 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side in motion 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side profile 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive side 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive steering wheel 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive wheels

The post First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo ED appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-ed-first-drive-review/feed/ 0
2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive Unveiled Before Paris Show http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-electric-drive-unveiled-paris-show-2/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-electric-drive-unveiled-paris-show-2/#respond Thu, 22 Sep 2016 22:01:48 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-electric-drive-unveiled-paris-show-2/ Smart has just unveiled the electrified version of its Fortwo microcar. Set to debut at next week’s 2016 Paris Motor Show is the 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive, which is expected to return more range than the current model. Based on the European testing standard, Smart says the 2017 Fortwo Electric Drive will return approximately...

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive Unveiled Before Paris Show appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Smart has just unveiled the electrified version of its Fortwo microcar. Set to debut at next week’s 2016 Paris Motor Show is the 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive, which is expected to return more range than the current model.

Based on the European testing standard, Smart says the 2017 Fortwo Electric Drive will return approximately 99 miles of range per charge for the coupe, and 96 miles for the cabrio. Smart isn’t ready to unveil U.S.-spec range, though we expect it to exceed the 2016 Fortwo Electric Drive coupe and convertible, which are both EPA-rated to travel 68 miles between charges.

2017 Smart Fortwo Electric rear three quarter

2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-side-in-motion-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-side-in-motion-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-side-profile-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-side-1

The new model features a 17.6-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery and an improved on-board charger that results in faster charging times. When using a Level 2 charger, Smart says the 2017 Fortwo ED should reach full charge in about 2.5 hours, which is a 3-hour improvement over the previous model. Charge time jumps to an estimated 22 hours when using a 110-volt power source.

The new Fortwo ED’s motor is rated at 80 hp and 118 lb-ft of torque. That’s enough to propel the coupe version from 0-60 mph in an estimated 11.4 seconds, or 11.7 seconds for the cabrio. Top speed is limited to 81 mph, though that may change for the U.S. version. Styling and features will mostly mimic the gas-powered Fortwo that arrived in the U.S. late last year. Pricing hasn’t been announced, though Smart says the Fortwo ED coupe should come stateside by next spring, with the cabrio to follow by summertime.

 

2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-rear-side-in-motion-02-1

2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-rear-three-quarters-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-1-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-app-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-App-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-charge-port-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-charge-station-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-side-in-motion-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-side-in-motion-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-rear-three-quarters-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-badge-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-charge-station-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarter-in-motion-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarter-in-motion-03-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarter-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarters-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarters-charge-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-rear-three-quarters-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-rear-side-charging-station-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-interior-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-interior-view-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-front-three-quarters-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-rear-three-quarters-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-front-three-quarter-in-motion-03-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-profile-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-profile-1 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric front three quarter in motion 1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-side-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-side-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-rear-side-in-motion-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-side-rear-side-in-motion-02-1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Electric-steering-wheel-1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio Electric Drive side profile in motion 1 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-battery-life 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-Brabus-badge 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-charging-station 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-charging-station-02 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-charger 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-center-stack 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-center-stack-screen 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-eco-mode 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-exterior-details-02 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-exterior-panel 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-interior 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-side 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion-06 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion-04 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion-05 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion-03 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion-02 2017-Smart-Fortwo-Cabrio-Electric-Drive-front-three-quarter-in-motion

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Electric Drive Unveiled Before Paris Show appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-electric-drive-unveiled-paris-show-2/feed/ 0
First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-first-drive-review/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-first-drive-review/#respond Thu, 22 Sep 2016 10:00:59 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=992956 Smart launched the third-generation Fortwo in 2015 with a full list of revisions and improvements. However, because Smart is competing for customers in a country known for big, wide, open spaces and cheap gas, that alone isn’t enough to move the volume needle. To try and bait more buyers into the Smart way of life,...

The post First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Smart launched the third-generation Fortwo in 2015 with a full list of revisions and improvements. However, because Smart is competing for customers in a country known for big, wide, open spaces and cheap gas, that alone isn’t enough to move the volume needle. To try and bait more buyers into the Smart way of life, engineers cut the roof off, giving us the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio.

The Fortwo’s biggest selling point is it’s designed specifically for crowded and dense places like New York City. Its pod-like size and turning radius that’s almost half that of a Chevrolet Suburban’s—at 22.8 feet versus the Suburban’s 43 feet—theoretically make the Fortwo an intelligent choice for city-dwelling car ownership.

However, the Fortwo’s footprint didn’t prove any more helpful in New York’s relentless gridlock. Instead sitting in traffic jams meant more eyes met the cabrio’s quirky and head-turning looks. But these weren’t a response to poor aesthetics. The new car looks remarkably better than the previous model. As John Lamm said in his review of the Fortwo Coupe, the Fortwo actually looks like “a real car.”

The cabriolet accentuates the Fortwo’s high-strength steel Tridion safety cell that gives the car its shape. Plastic outer body panels cover the sensitive parts and comprise the doors. They can be color-coded to match the interior in more than 400 combinations.

Stepping inside the Fortwo feels like nestling into a Nike sneaker enlarged by Wayne Szalinski for the next installment of “Honey, I Blew Up the Kids.” Except it comes with four wheels and a motor. Our tester’s Midnight Blue Metallic paint and top-spec proxy blue and white interior didn’t help to change that perception either. And you know that aerated polyester lining your athletic footwear? It trims the interior of the Fortwo, along with a mix of flat vinyl paneling and glossy plastics.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 08 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front end

It is different, but we quite like it. On top of being unique, the materials seem to be of high quality, and the interior exudes a sense of durability. The buckets are decently comfortable for short city sprints, a six-speaker JBL-based audio system bumps the latest from New York’s pop stations, and automatic climate control kicks on when the roof is up. Without mentioning power windows, locks, and driver’s seat, that’s about it.

Removing the roof off a vehicle tends to boost its fun factor. For the Fortwo cabriolet, the fun ranks up in 12 seconds at the touch of a center-console-mounted button. That retractable fabric roof functions at any speed, offering quick access to the sky. With the roof fully retracted, the side rails can be removed with some manual click-and-lift labor to create a “full-blown cabrio experience,” as Smart touts. The extra parts stow away in a compartment integrated into the trunk door.

The fun pretty much stops there. Going for the “full cabrio experience” means you’re exposed to the Fortwo’s unpleasant exhaust note, if you can even call it that. Anytime the engine hit the upper end of its rev range, something resembling an overworked, asthmatic hamster emanated greatly from the rear.

That noise is made by the Fortwo’s 0.9-liter turbocharged I-3, which is the same engine that’s found in the hardtop, as is the laggy 89 horsepower and 100 lb-ft of torque. Transmission options are also the same: a five-speed manual and an all-new six-speed Twinamic dual-clutch automatic. The tester featured the latter, which served slow but seamless shifts.

The Fortwo gets around Brooklyn adequately. Merging onto the Belt Parkway was as trouble free as weaving in and out of the maze of double-parked Ubers in Crown Heights. The suspension absorbs potholes and bumps sufficiently. Dips, hops, and speed bumps accentuate the drawbacks of its short wheelbase, however, and the Fortwo jostles you around quite a bit on its pitch axis when the road gets rough. By the end of the six-hour media crawl, the Fortwo left us longing for a stiff, supportive bucket seat and a yearning to feel respected on the road again.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio seats 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio center stack 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cargo space

Is the Smart Fortwo Cabrio an intelligent choice for the city dweller niche after all? With the tester ringing up at $23,660, including destination, it certainly doesn’t seem so. The cabriolet might be an affordable entrance into the realm of drop-tops at its base price of $18,900, but there is also the Fiat 500C and its targa-like roof to consider at $20,395. If your budget has elasticity around the fully loaded cabrio’s price, a new Mazda Miata, which starts at $24,915, might be within reach. Both are similarly small and maneuverable, economical, but are way more of a car than the Fortwo wants to be.

The 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio tries hard, but living in a city like New York requires smart choices. Size, it seems, is the only advantage to the Fortwo for the sake of parking and avoiding careless garbage trucks. But for that annual holiday pilgrimage to the in-laws’ outside the city proper, you’re going to wish you just bought a regular car or went with a rental.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio Specifications

On Sale: Now
Price: $18,900/$19,890 (manual/twinamic DCT auto)
Engine: 0.9L turbo DOHC 12-valve I-3/89 hp, 100 lb-ft
Transmission: 5-speed manual, 6-speed dual-clutch automatic
Layout: 2-door, 2-passenger, rear-engine, RWD convertible
EPA Mileage: 31-33/38 mpg (city/hwy)
L x W x H: 106.1 x 65.5 x 61.1 in
Wheelbase: 73.7 in
Weight: 2,094-2,150 lb
0-60 MPH: 10.7/11.6 sec (manual/automatic)
Top Speed: 94 mph
2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio grille 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 10 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 06 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear view 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 05 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio wheel 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio side profile 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio wheel 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio side profile 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear end detail 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 05 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio engine 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio interior overview 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio interior overview 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rpm and clock 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio steering wheel 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio steering wheel 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front view 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 09 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio side profile 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio lineup 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 4 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio side profile 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet removing roof rails 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front view 03 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio badge 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 05 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 07 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front view 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 04 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front three quarter 06

The post First Drive: 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-first-drive-review/feed/ 0
2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio Drops its Top in Detroit http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-drops-its-top-in-detroit/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-drops-its-top-in-detroit/#respond Mon, 11 Jan 2016 15:54:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-drops-its-top-in-detroit/ How to go topless during your urban commute.

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio Drops its Top in Detroit appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Fans of the ultra-tiny Smart Fortwo city car now have the option to go topless during their urban commutes. The 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet made its global debut at the 2015 Frankfurt auto show, and Smart chose the 2016 Detroit auto show to reveal the Cabrio to U.S. buyers before the car goes on sale here this summer.

The cabriolet builds off the all-new, third-generation 2016 Smart Fortwo hatchback that was introduced to America at the New York auto show in March of 2015. Its convertible roof is a powered canvas affair, which can be raised or lowered in just 12 seconds by using buttons inside the car or from the remote key fob. While the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet at first appears to essentially only have a large fabric sunroof, it really can turn into a full-blown convertible. Once the roof has been stowed, the side roof bars that connect the A- and B-pillars can be removed and stored inside the trunk for maximum wind-in-your-air enjoyment.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio side profile 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear three quarter 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio seats 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 03

The fabric convertible top can be optioned in black, red, or a denim blue said to emulate the look of jeans. Its glass rear window is heated. With the roof in place, the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio has the same silhouette and overall shape as the hatchback on which the droptop is based. Smart says the car’s roof can withstand 500 runs through an automated car wash, and that its opening mechanism has been tested at temperatures ranging from 5 to 176 degrees Fahrenheit.

The convertible carries over its sole powertrain option from the hardtop. A rear-mounted, 0.9-liter turbocharged inline-three engine directs 89 hp and 100 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels by way of either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Top speed of the Cabrio is 96 mph and the 176-pound weight penalty adds around half a second to the 10.1-second 0-60 mph time of the manual-transmission hatchback. Fuel economy will likely drop by around 1 mpg compared to the 32/39 mpg (city/highway) EPA numbers for the manual coupe (34/39 for the dual-clutch coupe). Standard features on the Cabrio include Bluetooth, automatic climate control, LED running lights, and hill-start assist. Pricing and final fuel economy numbers will be released later this year.

The Smart Fortwo was first launched in Europe in 1998, originally carrying the City Coupe name. The original convertible version came along in 2000, called the City Cabrio. The second-generation Fortwo arrived in 2007 and Smart officially entered the U.S. market in January of 2008. Production of the present, third-generation Smart Fortwo hatchback began in 2014 and arrived in the USA in 2015.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio rear end 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio front end 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio convertible top 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio center console 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 02 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio cabin 01 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 4 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet removing roof rails

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabrio Drops its Top in Detroit appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabrio-drops-its-top-in-detroit/feed/ 0
The New Smart Fortwo is Still Not Smart Enough http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-new-fortwo-is-still-not-smart-enough/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-new-fortwo-is-still-not-smart-enough/#respond Thu, 01 Oct 2015 17:00:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-new-fortwo-is-still-not-smart-enough/ Smart’s claim to fame remains that it’s a very small car.

The post The New Smart Fortwo is Still Not Smart Enough appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
When it finally arrived on these shores in 2008, a full 10 years after its European debut, there was no doubt about it: The Smart Fortwo was the smallest car on sale in America. Unfortunately, the list of superlatives ended there.

Because despite its august Daimler-Benz lineage, that first-gen Smart wasn’t close to being the finest small car to drive, the cheapest, the best built, or even the most economical. Lilliputian footprint aside, it was bettered on most other fronts by larger cars with back seats. That limited skill set—composed of compact dimensions (less than 9 feet long), a cartoonish visage that appealed to some of the people some of the time and, er, not much else—meant the Smart’s natural constituencies numbered but two: urbanites in a position to take advantage of its joyously unprecedented street park-ability, and persons who get off on car purchases that make them look verdantly green, even if the perception holds water only in their own imaginations or those of other people who don’t know much about cars, including the fact that the Smart wrung but 36 miles out of a gallon in the EPA’s combined cycle.

2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 06 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 06 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 06 2016 Smart Fortwo door trim panel and cabin

Mind you, reality need not always be an impediment to success. As Toyota’s Prius has demonstrated for close to two decades in the internationally recognized realm of automotive green, for most consumers getting the message of your own greenness out and up in lights is the real Job No. 1, and on this count the Smart, like the distinctive-looking Prius, which outsells all other hybrid sedans combined, has proven conclusively that for many extrovert hypermilers—not unlike show-off muscle heads—looks count for pretty much everything. Only thing is, Smart never sold like the Prius. Perhaps because it wasn’t as economical, practical, or anywhere near as creamy good.

So we’re pleased, for Smart’s sake, to report that the new Fortwo model, which we’ve just driven in Portland, Oregon, continues to loudly proclaim greenness and is in most every way a better machine than the one it replaces. With deformable plastic panels and a palette of nutty colors to set off the contrasting hue of a massively strong steel passenger cage, it is just as short as it ever was, almost miraculously even safer, and still stands out in a crowd. A joint enterprise between Daimler-Benz and Renault, which have anointed a related machine a Twingo replacement, the Fortwo is better-appointed than it was, better-handling, and at long last fast enough, thanks to an all-new 89-horsepower, 0.9-liter turbocharged triple, which replaces a 1.0-liter, 70-horsepower Mitsubishi unit of no particular distinction. Sixty comes in about 10 seconds now, fast enough surely to make it on time to your volunteer shift at the food co-op.

Better yet, Smart has binned the diabolically recalcitrant manumatic gearbox that used to make the best part of Smart motoring the moment you switched it off. Though imperfect, the new car’s six-speed automatic, and a first-ever five-speed manual option, make far superior companions. Thanks to a nearly 4-inch-wider track, stability is significantly improved in the new car, as are shoulder room and general interior comfort. Also along for the ride are predictable advances in in-car tech, which involve using your own phone, and, for those who’ve been dying to add a little inconvenience to their connectivity, a host of Smart-specific apps. (They’ll get it right one day.) And we would be remiss if we didn’t mention a brilliant 22.8-foot turning circle so compact it will make London cabbies weep with envy.

We are weeping, too, but for different reasons. Because for all the improvement, the new Fortwo is still not good enough, still outpaced by most other small cars. You know their names, all of them. They handle better, they’re more fun, practical, and, damn it, Jim, they get better gas mileage. All these years on, with small family sedans routinely breaking the 40 mpg barrier, it transpires that the 2016 Smart Fortwo has been relegated to navigating the backwaters of 1998 with an EPA combined mileage of 35 mpg and a highway figure of just 39 mpg, less than the 36/41 mpg of its predecessor. Yeah, I know gas is cheap, but that’s an excuse for buying a Tahoe, not a Fortwo. For now, Smart’s claim to fame remains that it’s a very small car. It looks like it ought to be really green. And that’s about it.

2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 11 2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 061 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 10 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 08 2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 03 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 09 2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 05 2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 07 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 12 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 05 2016 Smart Fortwo tail light 01 2016 Smart Fortwo wheel 2016 Smart Fortwo tail light 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 01 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 061 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 05 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 04 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 061 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 04 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 07 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 03 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 05 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 04 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 03 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 02 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 17 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 14 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 16 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 15 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 12 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 18 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 10 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 13 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 04 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 11 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 06 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 06 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 01 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 03 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 05 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 02 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 02 2016 Smart Fortwo model lineup 01 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 17 2016 Smart Fortwo grille 02 2016 Smart Fortwo parked 03 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 16 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 18 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 15 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 12

The post The New Smart Fortwo is Still Not Smart Enough appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/the-new-fortwo-is-still-not-smart-enough/feed/ 0
2016 Smart Fortwo Second Drive Review http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-smart-fortwo-second-drive-review/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-smart-fortwo-second-drive-review/#respond Wed, 09 Sep 2015 12:00:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-smart-fortwo-second-drive-review/ The new Smart is now worth considering.

The post 2016 Smart Fortwo Second Drive Review appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Just as the name smart fortwo tends to befuddle spellcheck, the first edition of Mercedes-Benz’s Smart car to hit U.S. shores perplexed many here. The concept of driving a pint-sized city car designed for European cities in a country famed for its wide-open spaces made the Fortwo an automotive oddity at best.

The all-new 2016 Smart Fortwo is still tiny, and it continues to be more appropriate for the likes San Francisco or East Coast urban environs than say, Minot, North Dakota. But thanks to myriad updates, the new Smart is now a bona fide four-wheeled commodity, a car finally worthy of true consideration.

Exterior design aids the new image. While the car’s overall length is unchanged, the 2016 Fortwo is about 4 inches wider than before, with fender flares front and rear that lend the car a more planted look, so it no longer appears to be running on its tippy toes. The added roundness of the shape plus the larger headlights and taillamps add to the new model’s persona. To be blunt, the Fortwo now looks like a real car.

The previous Smart’s interior was logical and very useable but not necessarily attractive. The 2016 Fortwo’s cabin appears to have been sculpted rather than just laid out. It’s not only appealing to the eye, but it also brings a sense of being in a normal rather than somewhat utilitarian vehicle. Factor in the added width, and it is now a comfy ride for a pair of adults. The passenger seatback can be folded forward to accommodate longer cargo more Boogie Board than surfboard, but it’s a useful feature nonetheless.

The optional multi-function steering wheel in our test car handled most immediate needs. A useful tach/clock combo sprouts from the left side of the dash. That said, the speedo could be easier to read and the HVAC controls are a bit low down on the center stack for quick use in crowded urban traffic.

The 2016 Smart Fortwo’s infotainment system sits high on the car’s center stack, and for $100 you can buy a bracket to hold your iPhone or Android phone of choice in front of it. Download the free Smart Cross Connect app, pair your phone up via Bluetooth and several added functions become available, including vehicle information, radio controls, and a navigation system, plus cool features like a locator for secret tiny places to park your Fortwo. The navi software we used was a beta edition, so hopefully it will be further refined. At this point it requires too much attention for use in a crowded city scene. For folks not used to living with their smartphone, it may be best to hold out for the upcoming, 7-inch in-dash, swipeable touchscreen option.

The powertrain highlights of the new 2016 Fortwo start with the optional dual-clutch six-speed automatic transmission, which replaces the atrocious automated manual of last model. A five-speed manual is standard. Also new is an all-aluminum, turbocharged three-cylinder engine. The 0.9-liter engine pumps out 89 horsepower and 100 lb-ft of torque available at 2,500 rpm. Other related numbers: 0-60 in 10.1 seconds with the manual, 10.5 for the automatic. Fuel economy: 33 city, 39 highway, 36 combined when paired to the automatic. Top speed? A go-there-if-you-dare 96 mph.

Once again the engine is encapsulated under the cargo shelf in a rear-drive layout. As before, at the core of 2016 Fortwo is the car’s rigid “tridion” cell of high-strength steels that cocoons the cabin. With a vehicle as small as the Smart, safety has always been a primary concern, especially here in the U.S. where giant trucks and SUVs clog the roads. Smart is quick to point out that it has done successful frontal collisions of the 2,053-pound Fortwo against the likes of C- and S-Class models. It helps that the Fortwo comes with eight airbags.

Underpinning the car is a new McPherson strut front suspension and a DeDion design at the back. Naturally, ABS, ASR, and ESP are included, as is Crosswind Assist, which helps keep the small-but-tall auto from getting crossed up when the wind whistles hard. A sport suspension is optional.

The 2016 Smart Fortwo has no trouble proving its reputation as a city car. With a turning circle reduced to 22.8 feet (curb to curb), it almost seems to swivel in its wheelbase. Effort with the variable-ratio, electric-assist steering is best termed “urban light,” and you can easily maneuver in places where you’d be curbing wheels in larger cars. Its 89 horsepower seems to be about right for city driving once you get used to the noticeable turbo lag. And, of course, there’s the chance to park parallel with or perpendicular to the curb. This car has always been happy city dweller.

2016 Smart fortwo 18 2016 Smart fortwo 21 2016 Smart fortwo 17 2016 Smart fortwo 24

Having lauded its city character, we have to add that the 2016 Fortwo can be reasonably fun on level, twisting roads. Don’t expect steering feedback and again anticipate the turbo lag, but we’d bet you could chase down any one of a number of small-but-prized sports cars from the past. What we can’t imagine enjoying in the Fortwo is climbing over the Donner Pass in the Sierra Nevadas on Interstate 80 or facing a day of 500-plus miles deadheading across southern Texas on Interstate 10. Then again, that isn’t what the Fortwo was designed to do.

It was designed to come in at low price, which happens to be $15,400 to start. Included are such items as power windows, cruise control, Bluetooth connectivity, and handy little sunglasses boxes over each door. There are four equipment levels — Pure, Passion, Prime, and Proxy — and the expected long list of options. Add $990 for the automatic transmission.

There will be more Fortwos in the future. The Cabrio version was just announced. An electric version is timed for next year, plus a factory-authorized Brabus edition. Whether the latter will be just for looks or with added oomph is unclear at this point. One Smart we won’t see here is the four-door Forfour body style. It wasn’t designed to meet U.S. regulations and, besides, spellcheck would have a fit.


2016 Smart Fortwo Specifications

  • On Sale: Now
  • Price: $15,400
  • Engine: 0.9-liter turbocharged DOHC 12-valve inline three-cylinder/89 hp
  • Transmission: 5-speed manual, 6-speed dual-clutch automatic
  • Layout: Two-door, 2-passenger, rear-engine, RWD coupe
  • EPA Mileage: 33/39 city/highway
  • Suspension: struts, springs
  • Brakes F/R: discs/drum
  • Tires: N/A
  • L x W x H: 106.1 x 65.4 x 61.0 in
  • Wheelbase: 73.7 in
  • Headroom: N/A
  • Legroom: N/A
  • Shoulder Room: N/A
  • Cargo Room: 9.2 cu-ft
  • Weight: 1,984-2,053 lb
  • Weight Dist. F/R: N/A
  • 0-60 mph:

    • 10.1-10.5 sec
  • Top Speed: 96 mph
2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 02 2016 Smart Fortwo side profile 01 2016 Smart Fortwo rear view in motion 04 2016 Smart Fortwo rear view in motion 03 2016 Smart Fortwo rear view in motion 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rear view in motion 01 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 04 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter in motion 01 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rear three quarter 01 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rear end 01 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 09 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 08 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 07 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 06 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 05 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 04 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 03 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 02 2016 Smart Fortwo model set 01 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 09 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 08 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 07 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 06 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 05 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 04 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 03 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 02 2016 Smart Fortwo front view in motion 01 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 05 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 04 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 03 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 02 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter in motion 01 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter 02 2016 Smart Fortwo front three quarter 01 2016 Smart Fortwo front end 02 2016 Smart Fortwo front end 01 2016 Smart Fortwo steering wheel 02 2016 Smart Fortwo steering wheel 01 2016 Smart Fortwo shifter 2016 Smart Fortwo shifter and center console 2016 Smart Fortwo seats 2016 Smart Fortwo rpm gauge 02 2016 Smart Fortwo rpm gauge 01 2016 Smart Fortwo radio 02 2016 Smart Fortwo radio 01 2016 Smart Fortwo instrument cluster

The post 2016 Smart Fortwo Second Drive Review appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2016-smart-fortwo-second-drive-review/feed/ 0
2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet Revealed Ahead of Frankfurt Debut http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabriolet-revealed-ahead-of-frankfurt-debut/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabriolet-revealed-ahead-of-frankfurt-debut/#respond Fri, 28 Aug 2015 13:30:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabriolet-revealed-ahead-of-frankfurt-debut/ Dropping the top on the new city car.

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet Revealed Ahead of Frankfurt Debut appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Fans of the ultra-tiny Smart Fortwo city car now have the option to go topless during their urban commutes. The 2017 smart fortwo Cabriolet makes its debut at next month’s Frankfurt auto show and will launch in the U.S. in summer 2016.

The Cabriolet builds off the all-new 2016 Smart Fortwo hatchback that was introduced to this country at the 2015 New York auto show in March. Its convertible roof is a powered canvas affair, which can be raised or lowered in just 12 seconds by using buttons inside the car or from the remote keyfob. While the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet at first appears to essentially only have a large fabric sunroof, it really can turn into a full-blown convertible: Once the roof has been stowed, the side roof bars that connect the A- and B-pillars can be removed and stored in the trunk for maximum wind-in-your-air enjoyment.

The fabric convertible top can be optioned in black, red, or a denim blue said to emulate the look of jeans. Its glass rear window is heated. With the roof in place, the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet has the same silhouette and overall shape as the hatchback on which the droptop is based. Smart says the car’s roof can withstand 500 automatic car-wash cycles, and that its opening mechanism has been tested at temperatures ranging from 5 to 176 degrees Fahrenheit.

Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 01 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet cabin Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear end Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 02

As a result, the Cabriolet carries over its sole powertrain option from the hardtop. A rear-mounted, 0.9-liter turbocharged inline-three engine directs 89 hp and 100 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels by way of either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Though fuel economy ratings aren’t yet available, Smart says the Fortwo Cabriolet will manage the a top speed of 96 mph. Standard features include Bluetooth, automatic climate control, LED running lights, and hill-start assist.

Expect more information on the 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet, including pricing and fuel-economy ratings, closer to its on-sale date next summer.

2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 4 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 1 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 01 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet seats 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet profile 1 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet front three quarter 3 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet removing roof rails 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet interior 2 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet rear three quarter 2

The post 2017 Smart Fortwo Cabriolet Revealed Ahead of Frankfurt Debut appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-smart-fortwo-cabriolet-revealed-ahead-of-frankfurt-debut/feed/ 0
Brabus Smart Fortwo Spied with More Aggressive Bumper, New Wheels http://www.automobilemag.com/news/brabus-smart-fortwo-spied-with-more-aggressive-bumper-new-wheels/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/brabus-smart-fortwo-spied-with-more-aggressive-bumper-new-wheels/#respond Fri, 24 Jul 2015 14:40:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/brabus-smart-fortwo-spied-with-more-aggressive-bumper-new-wheels/ Sporty city car could debut in Frankfurt.

The post Brabus Smart Fortwo Spied with More Aggressive Bumper, New Wheels appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
Brabus may have made a name for itself endowing Mercedes models with exorbitant amounts of horsepower — witness the 850-hp S63 coupe, for instance — but that doesn’t mean the tuning company ignores slightly more pedestrian cars. These spy photos show that Brabus is hard at work developing a tuning package for the new smart fortwo city car.

This Smart Fortwo prototype has a new front fascia that appears to have larger air intakes (although the car’s engine is actually in the rear), as well as a lower ride height, larger wheels, and enlarged brakes. The rear fenders have also been subtly enlarged to fit the wider wheels and tires, and a dual exhaust setup pokes out from the rear fascia.

Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos front 1 Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos rear three quarter 1 Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos profile Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos front three quarter 2

Brabus will likely upgrade the Fortwo’s chassis for sportier handling and braking, but don’t expect too much to change underhood. With the last Smart Fortwo, Brabus didn’t add any power to the 1.0-liter inline-three engine sold in the U.S. market. This time, reports suggest Brabus will try to pump up the gasoline engines offered in the Smart Fortwo, but we still don’t expect a huge amount of power from the Lilliputian runabout. In the U.S., the Fortwo will offer a 0.9-liter turbo-three engine rated at 89 hp and 100 lb-ft of torque.

Expect more details and photos when the Brabus Smart Fortwo makes its public debut later this year, likely at the Frankfurt auto show in September. The standard 2016 Smart Fortwo will hit U.S. showrooms this fall.

Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos front three quarter 1 Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos front 2 Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos rear three quarter 3 Smart Fortwo Brabus spy photos rear three quarter 2

The post Brabus Smart Fortwo Spied with More Aggressive Bumper, New Wheels appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/brabus-smart-fortwo-spied-with-more-aggressive-bumper-new-wheels/feed/ 0
This Smart ForTwo is Packed with 5,720 Watts of JBL Sound http://www.automobilemag.com/news/this-smart-fortwo-is-packed-with-5720-watts-of-jbl-sound/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/this-smart-fortwo-is-packed-with-5720-watts-of-jbl-sound/#respond Fri, 15 May 2015 14:25:00 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/this-smart-fortwo-is-packed-with-5720-watts-of-jbl-sound/ A rolling concert hall.

The post This Smart ForTwo is Packed with 5,720 Watts of JBL Sound appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
The Smart ForTwo city car is all about being small, and audio provider JBL recently teamed up with Smart to see how much it could get out of the tiny hatchback in terms of sound. The result is an impressively packaged, high-powered audio system with a whopping 5,720 watts of amplification.

JBL calls it the Smart Forgigs study, and it’s a version of the 2016 smart fortwo hatchback that’s outfitted with all sorts of amplifiers, speakers, and tweeters to make for a sound system on wheels. To put the JBL system’s 5,720-watt amplification number in perspective, the high-end Bang & Olufsen sound system in the Audi A8 only makes 1,300 watts.

Fitting the full array of sound equipment into the tiny Smart ForTwo was no easy task, and required 100 meters of wiring that’s integrated into the interior paneling. JBL also added lots of insulation material to insulate the passenger cell and door panels so they don’t shake apart from the sound system’s power. A DJ can also control special interior and exterior lighting to change color along with the music.

Though the fully outfitted Smart Forgigs won’t go up for sale anytime soon, Smart does offer a far less powerful, conventional 240-watt JBL audio system in the ForTwo. The 2016 Smart ForTwo will arrive in U.S. showrooms this September and will be available with a 0.9-liter turbo inline-three engine with 89 hp and 100 lb-ft of torque.

smart fortwo and jbl audio 04 smart fortwo and jbl audio 01 smart fortwo and jbl audio 05

The post This Smart ForTwo is Packed with 5,720 Watts of JBL Sound appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

]]>
http://www.automobilemag.com/news/this-smart-fortwo-is-packed-with-5720-watts-of-jbl-sound/feed/ 0