The 2016 Smart ForTwo is the first complete re-design of the Smart car since it first went on sale in Europe in 1998.
So how does it differ?
It isn’t any longer but the car is about 4 inches wider, so it is still a little tiddler of a car. Though there is now a bit more room for the driver and passenger. The car has lost its cuteness as its more bulbous now, having gone from a ‘one box’ design to a ‘one and a half box’ silhouette. Instead it offers better crash protection as it now has more ‘crumple zone’ so it is an improvement. A much higher use of high strength steel is used in the safety cage which further helps protect the occupants in a collision. Mercedes Benz has really put a lot of effort into improving the car’s crash protection abilities. Hard surfaces and plastic knobs have been removed and replaced with detailed and trimmed oblong sliders and soft touch surfaces.
There is a choice of transmissions with a standard five speed manual gearbox. But the smoother ‘Twinamic’ six speed dual clutch transmission means that the gearbox is hugely improved. Enhanced spring travel and deeper tyre walls help the suspension to handle sharp impacts much better than before. The turning circle is incredibly small and allows the ForTwo to be very nimble and even more manoeuvrable.
The Smart car’s three-cylinder engine mounted on its side between the rear wheels is used in the ForTwo. Three trim levels called Passion, Prime and Proxy are available. Techno geeks will be pleased with the power windows, LED daytime running lights, power steering, Bluetooth streaming for music and hands free commands, smartphone integration and a navigation system with real time traffic and weather info. A Smart Cross Connect app enables owners to access their car and its functions when they aren’t near the car.
The 2016 Smart ForTwo will appear in dealerships in the US in September this year and we can expect to see it in the UK next year. For a closer look check out cars.com.