Saw a Smart ForTwo today up close and personal - Page 2 - Fuelly Forums

Android Users - Coming Soon! - Migrating from aCar 4.8 to 5.0

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Old 06-13-2008, 04:41 PM   #11
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Some guy but a Haybusa Turbo charged engine in one of those and it looked like it was powered by TNT!

Look at this crazy sh it!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPQIizRp9ck
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Old 06-14-2008, 07:18 AM   #12
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goes to show you. you can pimp out ANYTHING
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Old 06-14-2008, 09:38 AM   #13
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One of the advantages of increased height is that it allows the seats to be higher off the ground, making for greater ease of entry/exit for many people. With an aging population, this is important. What is the point of a really low CD car if only 20 year olds can get in and out of it? Even for me, it's easier to get into/out of a Mopar minivan than it is my Geo. My wife can't even get into the Geo. Hence the Cadillac.

Seems like everybody wants the Smart car to be perfect. It ain't. But it does fill an important niche.

Quote:
Originally Posted by R.I.D.E. View Post
Besides increased weight cars have increased frontal area compared to my VX. This cancels out any aero improvements over the last 15 years. I think its a "height war" in response to the SUV flood over the same time period.

Aerodynamics is the key component in high speed driving. Reducing drag allows smaller engines and more transmission gears to improve mileage significantly.

I like the Smart because it is light, but the EPA ratings prove this point, aero is the solution and height destroys to potential for lower overall drag with the corresponding fuel penalty.

In the old days it was easy to see which car had the best aero value combined with frontal area. 70-80 MPH on 30 horsepower was good. and some did even better in the days when aero actually increases your top speed because your engine was small and underpowered, compared to today.


regards
gary
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Old 06-14-2008, 01:02 PM   #14
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Good post, JoeBob!

That's how I look at it too. As an owner for nearly 4 years, the car is not perfect, but it's great car overall. Driving with the top all the way down in the sun and scoring 60+ mpg US (it's a diesel) is hard to beat. No other cabriolet that I know of could do that!
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Old 06-14-2008, 04:19 PM   #15
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You're right. For a 1750-1825 pound car it "should" get better mileage. EPA estimates are garbage even for estimates. I've NEVER gotten less than 39.8mpg TOTAL combined driving. (see my logs, I don't count the first tank).

Parking is awesome. Maneuvering is absolutely incredible! My first car was a '67 Impala - it was around 2.5 Smarts long and almost 2 Smarts wide and compared to that - the Smart is miniscule. In the Smart I've been in some very tight spots. Lots of people cry about how small it is whining like they go out and buy a couch every weekend - it'll carry a grocery cart of groceries easy. It actually makes you buy less since you alway have in the back of your mind, "Do I really need this? It might not fit in the car." That's a good thing, I've been spending less money at the store and this is a huge impulse buyer talking.

Safety. Over on the Smartboards there is a guy who says he rolled his Smart several times after being sideswiped. Pics have yet to surface but it just happened yesterday. I've got a folder with pics of US Smart wrecks - the track record so far is excellent.

As far as what's the use of driving a good FE car like a maniac. A lot of owners are getting them because their "cutesy" and compared to "insert their current vehicle here", it's a huge improvement

Now...would I buy another? The next one will be here in about 3 months. If you order one today the wait is 1.5 to 2 years.
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Old 06-14-2008, 11:04 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by SL8Brick View Post
I've been seeing them almost daily around the Philly burbs.
I visited Manhattan recently and saw a bunch of them. Most of them were parked, and in ridiculously tiny spots.

If you've ever tried to find a parking space in Manhattan, you know that this feature alone makes the car priceless.
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Old 06-15-2008, 03:59 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBob View Post
One of the advantages of increased height is that it allows the seats to be higher off the ground, making for greater ease of entry/exit for many people. With an aging population, this is important. What is the point of a really low CD car if only 20 year olds can get in and out of it? Even for me, it's easier to get into/out of a Mopar minivan than it is my Geo. My wife can't even get into the Geo. Hence the Cadillac.

Seems like everybody wants the Smart car to be perfect. It ain't. But it does fill an important niche.
You make a good point about entry/exit issues for the elderly. But at the same time, ALOT of people have no problem getting into and out of a lower car. What I would like to see are more options, though. The BIG problem with small cars these days is that they are ALL tall. This is probably THE reason why none comes close to older cars when it comes to fuel economy - even if weight is similar. If you DON'T want a small car that resembles a miniature minivan, you pretty much have to buy an old used car. So why doesn't someone actually build a short, aerodynamic small car for those of us who would rather get high mileage and/or just prefer this type of car? The Smart might be OKAY for the city. But when you are not getting MUCH better mileage than a Nissan Altima on the freeway, what is the point for those of us who do ALOT of freeway driving.
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Old 06-15-2008, 07:59 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StorminMatt View Post
You make a good point about entry/exit issues for the elderly. But at the same time, ALOT of people have no problem getting into and out of a lower car. What I would like to see are more options, though. The BIG problem with small cars these days is that they are ALL tall. This is probably THE reason why none comes close to older cars when it comes to fuel economy - even if weight is similar. If you DON'T want a small car that resembles a miniature minivan, you pretty much have to buy an old used car. So why doesn't someone actually build a short, aerodynamic small car for those of us who would rather get high mileage and/or just prefer this type of car?
You're right StorminMatt- Ease of getting in an out is a big reason you see a lot of Smart owners buying them - heck, around here 9 out of 10 Smart owners are over 45 and thats a fact!! I never really looked at the CD on the Smart but that is most likely the reason as I've said it has the aerodynamics of an egg. Hey, the design worked for Mork. The best example ever of aerodynamic from a high # factory production car was the Insight. When I had mine I heard it everyday from strangers how it looked "weird". That would be a reason - still the Insight wasn't short in terms of Smart short. For someone to do short they are going to have to make it high to fit safety features in. Nowadays, leaving safety out is not an option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by StorminMatt View Post
The Smart might be OKAY for the city. But when you are not getting MUCH better mileage than a Nissan Altima on the freeway, what is the point for those of us who do ALOT of freeway driving.
What is the point? There are quite a few.
  • 1.
I'd honestly rather crash in a Smart than a CRX, Civic VX/HX, Metro or even quite a few new cars any day of the week - that doesn't mean I wouldn't mind having one of each. Mostly I'd rather never crash at all though - a lot of people feel the same way. Safety is something that is a big player.
  • 2.
The Smart is 95% recyclable. I know a lot of people say "who cares", there are some who do. How many other cars out there can make the same claim? Those plastic body panels some were whining about on another thread here, they are recyclable too.
  • 3.
The Smart actually has character, this should be #1 on the list. It's nowhere near as boring as say, an Altima or Civic. A lot of people like their car to have little character, even a Fit has some character. Nissan has the Versa which has a little too. This all of course is very opinionated, I've seen a very very few select - mostly little ricer punks with the mentality of say, a monkey - who are very firm in feeling the Smart is almost the ugliest car ever made and ranks only second to the Insight.

  • 4.
Price! The window sticker on mine was $14k. This included A/C, Automatic (OK, manumatic), Power Windows, Aluminum Wheels, Power Mirrors, Panoramic Roof, CD Player, Paddle Shifters and I'm sure I forgot something. Find another car optioned out like that. If you don't want all that stuff and just want a no frills lightweight car you're more along the lines of having a window sticker of $11,600. Next I'm sure I'll hear whining about how it's only a 2 seater. Yep, those stupid Corvettes are only 2 seaters too. As are the Porsches, S2000, and a few others I didn't mention. It being not a sports car is what makes it fit its niche in the market. A very small 2 seater Point A to Point B vehicle. Bang for the buck.



The Smart isn't for everyone. I've seen quite a few convert - haters to lovers - once they sat in the car and seen the features available for the price.
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Old 06-15-2008, 02:37 PM   #19
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You didn't mention Bosch's excellent ESP/ABS/BAS unit, which is unavailable in other small cars in N America. Active safety +++.

In a few years, US law will require SUVs (if there are any left on the market by then) to have ESP. smart had it in 2003.
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Old 06-15-2008, 05:17 PM   #20
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Highway MPG could be easily obtained by adding a boat tail so that the smart resembles something like this . It would have to be made of some kind of fabric material supported by telescoping rods so that the smart's parking advantage wouldn't be lost.

It's probably set so high for safety reasons.
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