2005 smart “Fortwo” Review

24 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on 2005 smart “Fortwo” Review

2005 smart Fortwo

SMART CAR #8216;FORTWO#8217; BY MERCEDES

By Steve Purdy

Detroit

The buzz at the North American International Auto Show in included rumors that company Mercedes Benz seriously consider bringing the little Smart Car to US shores. were able to score a piece of premium floor back near Scion they displayed the most Fortwo (referring to the car being two#8221; people) model, with a Forfour, a roadster, and the sport-utility version designed for the US. While gauging reaction to the car the and PR folks for Smart convinced us it could be a winner here.

We didn#8217;t want to miss an to do some serious research and some fun with the little so we arranged a test drive Toronto where Mercedes of Canada has its corporate headquarters and its press fleet. The Smart Car was in Canada just last They#8217;ve sold about units so far through 45 M-B dealers Canada who have the Smart

You might recognize the #8216;city in the photo above if you pay attention to car or have been to Europe in the few years. Other manufacturers tiny city cars in but the Smart Car defines best of the #8220;In 1994 Mercedes and the Swatch (watch company) created a joint venture Microcompact Car.

The main target was to create a new transportation method,#8221; we were by Richard Trevisan, manager of Canada Division of M-B. as we might imagine, created the concepts, which they had working on since the 70s, and did the marketing concepts, including the body panels which the customer to change the color of his car at

Major components are made in Germany but the car is assembled in France. tiny it is considered a premium car and is from $14,000 to about Canadian. Three trim are available.

The materials, design and of the Smart Car are truly top drawer.

broke shortly after the that the Smart Car division was to make ends meet and at of going away entirely as a in spite of worldwide sales 1998 of 630,000 units in 36 That crisis has passed. As we this review the Smart is being reorganized for efficiency, the roadster and sport-ute models. The news is the brand is safe for Bad news is, it will not be coming to the US in the term.

That#8217;s really bad we decided after just a few with the car because it#8217;s a hoot to drive and to see just around town.

As you can see by the photo above, the tiny car has no The rear tires stick out where the body ends. And its slopes away steeply the top at an angle reminiscent of the BMW Isetta of the 50s.

Over all it looks anything ever produced in America. The interior has an almost Art quality but with a modern Details are both functional and

Before we leave M-B HQ with the car we get a walk-around with ace sales gal Roelofson. The lovely Ms. Roelofson BMWs nearby until the to sell the Smart Car came We have no question that she is on the car as she parks ours behind showing us that two fit nicely one parking place.

She does a job of narrating the car and all its features for the camera. a natural. She also shows us the Car#8217;s superstructure displayed the show room – the only display of its kind

The rigid passenger compartment is as a secure cage using car-building techniques. Crumple are designed so that the forces of or rear impacts are directed under the sturdy passenger where they are absorbed and

Our road test tour take us from M-B HQ on the northeast of Toronto about two hours to quaint Stratford, Ontario the famous annual Stratford runs all summer and includes than a dozen professionally plays, both Shakespearian and

It takes the entire 4 or 5 miles M-B HQ back to the 401 freeway to just get to the controls of our peppy Smart Car Of course I want to shift it keeping it out of the automatic mode. I two options, paddle shifting on the wheel or the traditional floor between the seats.

Or I can alternate the two if I like. I also find, that the smart little Car will take it upon to shift for the inattentive driver who always shift within a range.

Not knowing exactly to expect I skitter full through the cloverleaf entrance the 7-lane 401 super highway, heavy traffic not amenable to a car that can#8217;t keep up. So I up #8211; with considerable

Powered by an 800cc, 3-cylinder engine mounted under the package tray, it makes over 50 horsepower and 74 lb.-ft. of Power gets to the rear by way of the choppy 6-speed transmission. way the shifts are slow and definitive but fun

Our friends at M-B insist that it easily get 60 miles per Imperial of diesel fuel. That#8217;s 48 mpg US.

Our support vehicle, a new Ford Hybrid, is just ahead of me. video taping the car for an upcoming TV so they#8217;re watching me carefully in, around and between 18-wheelers, and other manner of vehicle. driving into a stiff wind. I have the sliding top open all the way and the side windows Traffic is moving about 100 kph (62 when it#8217;s moving at while we#8217;re still in the

As we get to the edge of metropolitan Toronto picks up to around 130 kph (80 mph). My foot is flat on the floor. I seem to get more than 130 out of her though the speedometer goes to

I close up the top with the power It seals tight. Then I the power side windows. that wind resistance I can 140 easily keeping up with the westward flow of traffic.

does the diminutive Smart Car like at 80 mph between two semis in a wind on the 401, you ask?

Surprisingly stable, I must Certainly, I feel the jostle and of being buffeted about but is never a feeling of insecurity or Very impressive.

The suspension, as you guess, is quite firm, but as we up and down to keep the power at around 2,500 to 3,000 rpm we back and forth boat-like of the short wheel base and the pace of transition from to gear.

My colleagues in the Escape said the best video is the Smart Car dancing along in the lane flanked by huge on either side.

West of we exit the 401 at Kitchener and head on Highway 8. We arrive at the appointed to meet our host from the Tourist Bureau who will us around town and arrange interviews. We#8217;ve been of the Smart Car as an icon for youngsters but seeing awestruck looks from all generations including our host.

As we bounce around for the next couple of days a feel for the area and the car we continue to be at the attention and interest the Smart Car This is certainly not your car if like to be unnoticed, particularly in the color of our test car. It has available in Canada long for quite a few folks to know it is.

Many folks look up, and holler, #8220;Smart Car#8221;. The look up, point and holler, that?#8221;

According to our M-B folks its not being sold in urban as we might expect. It#8217;s in small towns as well people have relatively distances to drive and want the fun and of this odd duck. Division Trevisan tells us that the demographic group among owners is what he calls #8211; that is, #8220;dual-income,

Judging from the dozens of around Stratford with we talked, from a group of delinquents at the local trade to an old fellow from Quebec the swans with his much-younger the appeal of the Smart Car easily generations.

I can#8217;t imagine this great little car find anything less an enthusiastic reception among US car

So, we heartily recommend that our at Daimler-Chrysler and Mercedes Benz bringing it here. I#8217;ll be a likely customer.

I#8217;m one real DINK. There are more of us.

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