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Nov 9, 2006
The new smart fortwo is the logical further development of a car that attained cult status within a very short space of time and that set standards of comfort, agility, safety and ecology. In future, too, the smart fortwo will embody the brand's core values of innovation, functionality and joie de vivre.
And it will retain its unmistakable character: its striking one-box design, its compact dimensions, the two-colour and two-material concept with the striking tridion safety cell and the innovative and extremely practical plastic bodypanels.
The city loves you. Even more.
A smart is classless, it conveys a positive attitude to life. Its owner makes a statement: this is a well-informed person with a modern way of thinking and a sense of responsibility. The smart fortwo demonstrates the form that perfect urban mobility takes today. It is an automotive declaration of independence to the effect that this is all the car a person needs in the city.
The previous smart fortwo was above all characterised by four main features: comfort, agility, safety and ecology. The new smart fortwo will continue all this in a further dimension. It remains a car for people with an individual lifestyle.
No other car has a younger clientele. 85 percent of buyers are under 40. smart cars are driven by managers and mothers, sales reps and fathers. Apart from being extremely economical, lively and easy to drive, with its length of less than three metres the new fortwo is also unrivalled in the amount of space it needs on the road and in car parks.
The new smart fortwo will continue the success of its predecessor that is now sold in 36 countries worldwide. More than 750,000 smart fortwo have been built since 1998.
The smart fortwo has become a familiar part of the roadscape in many cities and it is well-liked everywhere. From 2008 the compact two-seater will also delight many people in the USA and will convincingly convey the message: It's not money that makes you rich.
When designing the new smart fortwo, designers and developers took an in-depth look at the predecessor model and anchored a large number of improvements in the 451 specifications (the internal name for the new smart fortwo).
The aim was to retain the uniqueness of this car - and at the same time to make the new smart fortwo even more comfortable, even more agile, even safer and even more ecological. Here are the most important specifications to be offered as standard or optional equipment:
- Retention of the characteristic design language
- More expression, more independence, more masculine traits
- The fortwo remains small and special
- Likeable appearance
- Conveying a youthful freshness
- Retention of functions such as the tridion safety cell and the two-colour/two-material concept
- More dynamic appearance, more coupé character at the rear
- Longer wheelbase and wider track
- Longer length for more spaciousness and a larger luggage compartment
- Air conditioning with temperature control and greatly improved performance
- Folding and reclinable passenger seat (single hand operation)
- fortwo cabrio: fully automatic soft top, can be operated at any driving speed
- Clearly arranged instruments, simple and intuitive operation
- User-friendly service lid on the front of the vehicle
- Lockable glove compartment
- Engines with more power and torque
- Larger capacity petrol engine, naturally aspirated engine and turbo version
- Better driving performance, faster acceleration response
- Increased electronically limited top speed of 145 km/h
- Reengineering automated manual transmission, five gears instead of six, shorter shift delays
- Wider standard tyres 155/60 R 15 at the front, 175/55 R 15 at the rear
- More direct steering
- tridion safety cell
- Four star EuroNCAP classification target
- Additional compliance with all US crash requirements
- Optimisation of passive safety
- Design of front to consider pedestrian protection requirements
- Lower vehicle centre of gravity
- New head/thorax side airbags
- Exterior temperature indicator with frost warning as a standard feature for all lines
- smart fortwo cabrio rear window made of safety glass and heated
- Panoramic roof made of extremely sturdy and breakage-resistant polycarbonate
- Further reduced consumption
- "Three litre" status for diesel variant, lowest consumption in its class
- Diesel particle filter (open system, closed system from 2008)
- smart fortwo with starter generator
- Concept ready to accommodate alternative drives
- Exchangeable and recyclable bodypanels
Evolutionary design: the evolution of an icon
Should an icon like the smart fortwo undergo further development at all? The answer is "yes" – indeed, this is a must. For the new smart fortwo it was important to strike a balance between retaining the strengths of the previous model on the one hand and bringing in new ideas on the other hand.
The past ten years have seen great changes to the terms of reference. The more than 750,000 smart fortwo customers influence the requirements for the successor model. However, so do new legal requirements, especially those for the American market.
The brand, at its youthful age of eight, also stakes out clear terms of reference for the design. It was important to embody innovation, functionality and joie de vivre - the core values of the brand – in the second smart fortwo generation just as these were anchored in the first generation.
The new smart fortwo has different eyes – projection headlamps. These are not only unique in this vehicle class, they also give the smart a face that is more technical and grown-up. In addition, the indicators are integrated in the headlights.
The new smart fortwo has a more beefy appearance. The wheelbase has increased by 55 millimetres and the track width by eleven millimetres; the new smart fortwo appears wider and more athletic. This impression is underlined by the wider standard tyres (front: 155, rear 175), the additional air intake and the contrasting black bottom section of the bumper.
Black moulding also runs under the whole width of the windscreen. This covers the wiper axes and ends in the left and right-hand mirror triangles. The side indicators have a low position on each wing side and also round off the swage line in the doors.
The new smart fortwo is longer, but it still has extremely compact dimensions. It is exactly 195 millimetres longer than the first generation. The front overhang is 72 millimetres longer, the wheelbase has increased by 55 millimetres and the rear overhang is 68 millimetres longer.
The designers have succeeded in retaining the smart fortwo's typical silhouette whilst giving the car a more masculine character. Clarity and modernity continue to play a decisive role in the shape of the vehicle.
In addition to the somewhat slimmer tridion safety cell in the sill and door area, the horizontal door handle is a striking new feature. It has been rotated by 90 degrees compared with its predecessor. It cleverly takes up the shoulder line just below the window edge. This is now more pronounced and runs into the front wing and the headlight.
The rear wing now also has a more pronounced contour. The rear window slopes a little more than before. This is firstly to keep the roof short and also to give the car a more sporty and elegant appearance. In order to comply with laws relating to pedestrian protection the front is now a little higher and steeper. The axes for the clap-hands-type aero-wipers are concealed.
The new smart fortwo is wider - by 43 millimetres to be precise. However, it appears considerably wider than this because the rear apron now runs straight through without an indent. The projecting handle of the tailgate also contributes to the wide effect.
Four instead of six rear lights now adorn the rear view of the smart fortwo. The rear light, brake light and indicator are located at the top. The bottom lights are housed in a circular reflector. Here, the rear fog light is located on the left-hand side and the reversing light on the right.
The rear window reaches across almost the whole width of the vehicle and is framed by two black glass-like panels. These replace the small quarter windows of the predecessor.
smart fortwo cabrio: fully automatic opening and closing of the soft top at any speed
What better way to enjoy "summer in the city" than in a smart fortwo cabrio? The open two-seater has enjoyed great popularity in many European cities for years, especially in Rome. It is an icon with cult character.
The soft top can be opened and closed at any speed – a feature not offered by any other cabriolet manufacturer. In addition to this the new smart fortwo cabrio offers enhanced comfort: whereas the driver previously had to get out of the car to lock the soft top in its final position at the rear, this is now done fully automatically at the touch of a button.
The heated glass rear window is a further new feature. It has a higher position than the previous PVC window and this greatly increases the loading volume when the soft top is folded down.
As before, drivers of a smart fortwo cabrio can release the rear bow of the soft top and swing it up. The soft top snaps into place in a folded up position facilitating loading of the luggage compartment.
For even more cabrio feeling, as with the previous version the roof bars can be removed by releasing a lever on the C-pillar and stored in a special compartment integrated in the tailgate.
The soft top itself is made from a strong black polyacrylic fabric on the outside with a polyester/cotton mix on the inside and a layer of rubber in between. The roof spoiler made of black polyamide boasts an aerodynamic shape and also accommodates the third brake light. The soft top has been developed and produced by the roof specialist Edscha.
The body structure of the smart fortwo cabrio shares 70 percent of its panels with the coupé. The A-pillar has been strengthened in the windscreen area with an internal high-strength steel tube. The solid roll-over bar between the B-pillars is welded and bolted to the tridion safety cell. All these measures add just 15 kilograms to the weight of the car.
The technical highlights of the new smart fortwo
- Central locking with radio remote control
- Panoramic roof made of polycarbonate
- Clear glass headlights featuring projection technology
- smart fortwo cabrio: fully electric soft top
- smart fortwo cabrio: heated rear glass window
- Air conditioning with temperature control (standard for passion)
- Audio CD system with MP3 interface (optional)
- Rain and light sensor (optional)
- Automatic door locking when the vehicle is in motion
- State-of-the-art four-valve engines with variable valve control, 62 kW variant with turbo
- More power and torque
- New automated manual five-speed transmission with shorter shifting times
- Shift paddles on steering wheel (standard for pulse, option for passion)
- Electrically operated clutch
- Electric power steering (optional)
- Optimised tridion safety cell
- Optimised side protection with steel door structure
- esp (the only vehicle in this class to feature esp as standard in the basic version)
- abs with electronic brake-force distribution
- Brake assist
- State-of-the-art restraint systems such as front and side airbags (option), belt tensioner and belt-force limiter
- High-performance brakes
- Safety seats with integral seat belts
- New head/thorax side airbags (optional)
- smart fortwo cdi consumes less than 3.5 litres under standard conditions (corresponds to 90 g CO2/km and "three litre" status)
- smart fortwo cdi: only vehicle in this class to feature a particle filter as standard (in DE, IT, CH - open system, closed system from 2008)
- petrol versions consume less than five litres per 100 km under standard conditions
- smart fortwo with starter generator offers further fuel saving of up to 13 percent in city traffic
- Requires minimum road space
- Powder coating of tridion safety cell
- Use of water-soluble, solvent-free paints
- Solid colour bodypanels in the basic colours white, yellow and black
- Instrument panel made of flax/plastic composite material
- High recycling rate