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Thread: The Smart Car: better mileage and amazingly good crash protection

  1. #11
    Senior Member Wesley's Avatar
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    I was looking at these cars at the local dealership which is located next to my dentist. Their wheels about the size of my power chair's. The problem with saying that it's a city car is that East Coast cities have terrible roads. I break something on my van every time I go to New York City. And Philadelphia isn't much better.

    The diesel engine looks much more efficient. But unfortunately in the US, diesel fuel costs pretty much cancel out the savings the extra mileage gives.

  2. #12
    There are a few of these eggs still around town, but they really are not very popular even though they are economical. The "cool factor" is about zero. Bare basic model starts at €10 grand.
    "So I have stayed as I am, without regret, seperated from the normal human condition." Guy Sajer

  3. #13
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    I currently drive a 4 door 1.5 toyota echo which gets upwards of 30 mpg, I can also fit a fold up power assist wheelchair in the boot, 4 adults (not in the boot) and drag just about anything off at the traffic lights if I want. Based on this these smart cars are a bit of a con job if you ask me, seems a lot of sacrifice for a relatively small fuel saving. The Mr Bean factor is also an issue for me with these tiny vehicles. One reason why I would not go anywhere near a hybrid, toyota make better more fuel efficient petrol only vehicles.

  4. #14
    The electric version is on the way:

    Aston University and leading support services provider, Amey, will both take delivery of a smart ed (electric drive), as part of the UK-exclusive market trial of smart's fully electric, iconic, two seater car.
    smart is working with around 60 business partners and green energy suppliers to test the car in 'real-life' situations, in advance of the market launch in 2010. The trial offers an alternative transport solution for businesses to help them tackle environmental concerns.
    The iconic two seater cars have a top speed of 60mph (electronically limited), a range of 70 miles on a single charge and can achieve the equivalent of 300 mpg. The smart ed is charged by simply plugging it directly into any UK mains 3 pin plug socket, and a meter on the dash swivels through 90 degrees making it possible to see the state of battery charge.
    The conventional, non-electric, versions have been around for a while and whilst they raised a few eyebrows when they were first seen they are now common sights and seem fairly normal. Around town they make a lot of sense not simply because of their fuel economy but also because they take up so much less parking space, which makes it easier for the driver to find a parking place. If you never carry more than one other person in your car it does not make sense to drive around a lot of seats that will never be used.

  5. #15
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    The smart car concept is nothing new either, the Japanese introduced tax incentives for motors under 660 cc after the war. This resulted in a class of vehicles called "Kei cars" with a multiitude of varieties being manufactured. Unfortunately countries such as Australia prohibited imports of these vehicles, Im not sure why. Heres a much better alternative to the smart car imo, and cheaper to run. http://www.themotorreport.com.au/437...s-rwd-kei-car/

  6. #16
    Suspended Andy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesley View Post
    I was looking at these cars at the local dealership which is located next to my dentist. Their wheels about the size of my power chair's. The problem with saying that it's a city car is that East Coast cities have terrible roads. I break something on my van every time I go to New York City. And Philadelphia isn't much better.

    Good point, I forgot about the gapeing chasm effect on something like this. We have those here too. But this and the Mini along with possibly the Yaris fit the bill for something that would work in my garage with crip access to 2 vehicles with little juggling. But when you consider it's just $5K more to go Mini I think I'll keep my origional pick for a 'cute' 2nd car.

    Now if this Smart car was priced by size to maybe ~$8K....

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