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Smart Fortwo Review

The Smart ForTwo may appear small at first, but it sports innovative engineering and packaging for its kind. Many have taken a liking to this model as the Fortwo has become a regular sight on both city and country roads. Owners are attracted to the model’s compact ease and fun experience. Plus it doesn’t hurt that the Fortwo is affordable to maintain.

Pros

The Fortwo deserves no less than five stars for its design. The overall look and function of each piece is so innovative that no other manufacturer has reached such inventiveness. What the ForTwo offers is a visible steel monocoque that has interchangeable plastic body panels mounted on. This design is based on a strength tridion safety cell that makes the vehicle pass every crash test. Despite its 2695mm length, the Smart ForTwo is able to keep passengers safe. Expect the NCAP to give this vehicle four stars.

The latest ForTwo generation is slightly bigger than the original with a 195mm longer length and 55mm added to the wheelbase. The engine is found under the boot, while the rear overhang contains the 68mm increase. Otherwise these are the only design changes we see; the rest is kept according to the original to distinguish the car as a Smart vehicle.

The cabin also sports additional measurements such as an added 55mm to the wheelbase. There’s also 43mm more width for more interior room; the passenger seat also enjoys extra shoulder room at 1260mm. Despite the ForTwo’s compact appearance, headroom and legroom is more than enough in the cabin. The straight shape of the dashboard also gives the interior a more spacious look. The cabin also employs classy materials such as wound cotton on the dashboard and doors. The boot offers more capacity than the previous generation at 220 litres.

Cons

Although the ForTwo is meant only for city roadways and journeys, the latest generation does little to improve from this limitation. Its top speed at 90mph works going around the city and going to and from the office, but serious car enthusiasts would want a faster speed at certain moments. The car also tends to be affected by crosswinds along the way. The 0.8-litre 53bhp diesel engine doesn’t impress much either as it takes 16.8 seconds to arrive at 62mph from a standstill. There’s also no felt improvement in the shift speed and quality of the five-speed automated manual gearbox. The 101bhp petrol does the best job, but it’s quite an investment compared to what other models have to offer. The added price tag doesn’t indicate more improvements either as the engine still uses the same semi-automatic gearbox as the others.

Power steering isn’t great on the ForTwo, especially when you have to get in and out of tight parking spaces. You can expect it to perform well weaving in and out of traffic but the poor steering gets in the way of going into corners. The front grip is also poor as you’ll have to push hard into the brakes to get a proper standstill. The gearbox is also quite sluggish, so the ride isn’t as smooth as expected.

What do you think?

(Average rating: 5 , Total rates: 1 )

A History of the Smart Fortwo

The Smart Fortwo is a mini urban produced by auto manufacturer Smart GmbH, a branch of Daimler AG that specialises on small automobiles. Fortwo was first unveiled in 1998 at the Paris Motor Show. To date, the Fortwo is one of the lightest vehicles in the European automotive market. This car is currently on its second generation of production, with its all-electric version a hit in international markets.

The manufacturers saw that a smaller car gave people more mobility around the city. This resulted in the Fortwo W450. This first generation was created for urban dwellers to promote a stress-free driving. Various restyling were made starting 2000 to 2002, resulting in unique editions with various interior and exterior features.

The second generation or W451 was introduced in 2006. In this model, the manufacturers improved the Fortwo’s size and greatly upgraded its safety features. W451 also uses a more fuel efficient engine created by Mitsubishi Motors.

To compete with the increasing number of fuel efficient cars in its segment, Smart GmbH introduced a hybrid version in 2007 at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The production of the Smart Fortwo electric drive was more enthusiastic: conceptualization to production spanned 3 years. A third generation is set to be released in the coming years.

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