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Smart formore compact SUV - 2006

Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077
edited March 2014 in smart
This European brand will be offered by Daimler-Chrysler for 2006. How do you think this unusual vehicle will do in the US?

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Comments

  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    Depends on the price. It could be the next Honda Element... although it's unclear whether that's a good thing or not.
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    and thought it was a blast. A somewhat noisy, skittish little thing that bounced around at highway speeds, but a blast.

    I understand the second generation basic Smart and the Smart Roadster have improved a lot. Still, I get the sense from the reviews the cars get a lot of leeway. People seem willing to overlook some issues because the cars are small and cute and can be endlessly personalized.

    I like the Smart a lot to give the formore a long hard look.
  • commoduscommodus Posts: 4
    There's a real possibility that the formore will one-up the Honda Element. It has unique styling, but it's not as eccentric (I do like the Element's styling personally, because it's so relentlessly odd). People thus shouldn't be repulsed by it without trying it first. It could potentially be a big seller if it has the fuel economy and safety to go along with the looks.

    It's a shame though that you Americans aren't getting the fortwo, the model logic1 drove. It wouldn't make sense for much of the US, but it could have been the perfect car for NYC or LA - especially in the CDI diesel trim that we're getting in Canada soon, with 60 MPG and enough cargo room for what a city car really needs (the week's groceries, luggage for two, etc.).
  • mnmatchesmnmatches Posts: 111
    Brabus has got an 80hp model available....maybe if they bring that over I'll get one. Or better yet...by one and drop the yamaha yzf-r1 engine into it. 180hp in a tiny little roadster would rival a lotus. muhahahaha
  • ratbert1ratbert1 Posts: 72
    There really needs to be more detail. It seems to look cool from the drawing. If it has AWD and a diesel engine (or better yet - diesel hybrid), under $25k, then I'm interested.
  • player4player4 Posts: 362
    image

    2006 Smart Crossover

    Daimler Chrysler plans a major case of the Smarts for North America in 2005. A new crossover/sport/utility will lead here, offered with a 100-horsepower gasoline four-cylinder and possibly a turbodiesel designed for the next-generation Mercedes-Benz A-Class. The robust-looking Smart crossover will have the Tridion safety-cage design that was unveiled in a concept car at the 2002 Geneva show.
    Styling features the Smart's trademark two-color scheme. An all-wheel-drive system, shared with Mitsubishi's Rallye Colt subcompact, necessitates a higher ground clearance and a wider track than the Smart four-door sedan.
    It won't sit in a one-car Smart show-room: The crossover may share space with Smart & Family, a four-door city car codeveloped with Mitsubishi, the Smart & Passion, an American-market version of the familiar European city cabrio, Smart & Pulse, the fixed-top version of the Passion, and the Smart Roadster, a low-slung two-seater. The Roadster will be built in Juiz de Fora, Brazil, alongside Mercedes A- and C-Classes.
    The Smart City Car's familiar nose is redisigned for the crossover to match the look of the upcoming Smart Roadster.
  • rinkwiderinkwide Posts: 6
    Just finished a focus group market research study on this new Sport-Cute.

    We got to see the prototype (after being practically strip-searched and then passed through a metal detector to make sure we didn't have and cameras or other recording devices).

    I was quite impressed. Very cool rallye inspired styling. It has a neat over-emphasized (painted a different tone than the rest of the car) safety cage passenger compartment. A little less road clearance that other small SUVs but enough to give it an athletic look. Overall, kinda' like a poor man's VW Toureg/Porsche Cayenne.

    They also had a BMW x3, Honda Element, Toyota Matrix and Rav4 there for us to compare it with. Although the new Smart was only a prototype it clearly blew away the competition on initial impression of both the interior and exterior. It could fill a nice niche for people looking for a safe and sporty little SUV that doesn't look boring or cost a fortune.

    Also got to see the other three cars in their line. My initial impression was that I liked them all immediately. Every car they have is F3: Fun, Funky and Functional.

    By the questions we were asked you could tell they're trying to figure out where to price it and how closely to associate the brand with Mercedes.

    It was a nice experience and I'm interested to see how this make will fare here in the US.
  • How soon would they be available?
  • fdannafdanna Posts: 263
    I went for a walk on Friday (10/15) and a little smart fortwo went rolling by with some kind of strange plates. They were American shape plates but I couldn't read them quick enough. Smart must have been doing some kind of event in the Boston area.

    What really struck me, though, was how small the car really is. I've only seen them in Europe and the size is not as striking compared to other European cars, but on an American road, it's unbelievably small!

    I wonder how much bigger the ForFour will be when it arrives.
  • I would be interested if it makes it here with the turbodiesel. Forget it if it just has the gas engine. It would not have enough torque to keep things moving fast enough for traffic here.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077
    Is Smart Still a Smart Idea for Mercedes, for the U.S.?

    http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Columns/articleId=104189

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  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Well, they yanked it out of their NAIAS display.

     

    I did get to sit in the roadster done up by Brabus, it was very cool. The thing is just diminuitive, makes my Miata seem huge. Leg room was tight and it was hard to get into, but it just seemed like tons o' fun.

     

    Let's see what their next move is.

     

    -juice
  • tempusvntempusvn Posts: 119
    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-zap2mar02,0,4659789.story?c- -oll=la-home-business

    Excerpts:

    By John O'Dell, Times Staff Writer

    OK, the Smart car isn't that smart.

    Zap made a big publicity splash with its plans to sell the tiny two-seat coupe, promoting it as the most efficient gasoline-powered vehicle ever at 60 miles to the gallon and lining up thousands of orders.

    But before the French-made ultra-mini could even think about hitting U.S. roads, the Environmental Protection Agency ordered the Santa Rosa, Calif., auto importer to scale back its fuel-efficiency claims.

    The federal agency's fuel economy estimate for the Smart car isn't 60 miles per gallon — it's 37, sort of like a Honda Civic.

    At 37 mpg, the Smart would have the ninth-best rating in the EPA's rankings for 2005.

    It would be in league with the much bigger Toyota Echo and certain models of the Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic and behind the 50-mpg gas-electric hybrids sold by Honda Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp.
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