Forget everything you know about Smart because the new #1 (yes, that’s really its official name) will be a totally different car. Significantly bigger than a ForFour, the new crossover will finally make its official debut on April 7. The disclosure was made by Mercedes and joint-venture partner Geely. In case you haven’t heard, the Smart brand is now a German-Chinese effort.
A follow-up to the Concept #1 from last year, the EV should retain the showcar’s footprint: 4.29 meters (168.9 inches) long, 1.91 meters (75.1 inches) wide, and 1.70 meters (67 inches) tall. It’ll be a vertibale giant next to a ForFour, thus signaling Smart’s intentions of going big, literally. The crossover is going to ride on a dedicated electric car platform, allowing the engineers to shave off the overhangs and stretch the wheelbase.
Smart #1 spy photos
Indeed, the concept measured 2.75 meters (108.2 inches) between the axles, thus giving the Smart #1 a slightly longer wheelbase than that of the Mercedes EQA. That should translate into a spacious cabin with legroom typically found in ICE-powered vehicles from a segment above. Unlike the four-seat concept car, the production-ready model will be more practical by featuring a three-seat rear bench.
A fairly low drag coefficient of 0.29 has been made possible through various aerodynamic optimizations, including door handles that remain flush with the body. Designed by Mercedes and built in China, the Smart #1 will also have an active front grille shutter for better airflow to drive down the Cd figure. Spy shots have confirmed it will largely retain the concept car’s design inside and out, albeit the 21-inch wheels are unlikely to be carried over.
The EV will ride on Geely’s Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) and should have a 12.8-inch touchscreen to mirror the concept car. The rear suicide doors will make way for a regular setup for a crossover that will go into production as opposed to the ill-fated Formore concept from the 2000s. Because LED light bars are all the rage these days, the Smart #1 will have one at the front and another at the rear.
Technical specs beyond the vehicle’s dimensions and platform remain shrouded in mystery. However, the rumor mill speculates it’ll have a 70-kWh battery pack with enough real range of more than 200 miles (322 kilometers). However, take these numbers with the proverbial pinch of salt as they haven’t been confirmed by Mercedes nor Geely.
It will initially go on sale “at home” in China before being exported to Europe.
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