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Smart, the German-born automaker that revived the stagnant microcar market in the first place, has seen itself fall behind in the city car wars with Toyota's oh-so-clever iQ taking the top spot with its extra space for passengers and packages via its brilliant layout. What's more, new machines are on the way from BMW (the long-rumored Isetta revival) and the Audi (the A1, which will be debuted at the next Geneva Motor Show).
As such, we're not surprised to see Smart engineers out and about testing what appears to be the next generation of the diminutive Fortwo. Judging from the fender flares, we might make and educated guess that the new model will be slightly wider than the current car, which makes sense as the same platform is rumored to gain an extended-wheelbase variant called the Fortwo+2.

Unlike the previous Forfour, the Fortwo+2 would share the expected rear-engine, rear-wheel drive architecture with the base car and would come equipped with what would surely be a mini set of rear doors. According to Auto Express, we should see the next Fortwo in dealerships late next year with the +2 showing up in 2012. Electric and hybrid versions are reportedly in the works – and here's hoping they finally fix that horribly awkward transmission.

[Source: Auto Express]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 16 Comments
      matthew
      • 5 Years Ago
      Doesn't matter who's driving in it, I always hear that circus music playing in my head when I see these stupid little clown cars. Why do they exist? Do they cater to the clown-shoe-wearing demograpic? Make real cars!
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        Another day....another set of stupid anti-SUV comments for Luis.....

        Where does the OP say anything about SUV's or "big block V8"? You are just making crap up so you can spout off with your dumb SUV bashing.

        The SMART is a piece of junk and a real compact car can be had for the same amount of money with a real transmission, actual cabin room, better fuel economy, and runs on regular not premium.
        executionerz3
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        We have a new Suburban and use it for traveling and get 20mpg on Hwy (fast driving)
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        Glock - go back under your rock
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        wiki:The smart features an automated manual transmission without a clutch pedal, 6-speed for the first generation, 5-speed for the second. Input from floor-mounted shifter or optional steering wheel-mounted paddles controls a servo-operated clutch and sequential automated gearbox


        this is the ideal pizza delivery wagen(many pizza shop in europe have or had this).
        many city center coorperations have these with their logo on it.

        i always like the idea, a 3 cyl turbo engine on the rear axle, driving the rear axle.
        this is the ideal car if you live in a big city.
        it parks realy quickly and easy, no need for parallel parking.

        you do more biznis with this car, than other cars.
        it draws attention, fast parking, fast inner city racing, etc, etc.



        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        It's inanity like this that leads to oil-crises. Your big-bloc-v8 mindset only works when gas is $2/gallon and parking is free, wide and abundant. Try living in a dense urban environment, with small, expensive parking spaces or in countries with $6/gal gas, and they you see these micro-cars make tons of sense. Americans still don't realize that you can actually live life with a Suburban or Enclave. You don't need 3 rows and 8 seats to carry you and maybe a passenger around 90% of the time while getting (hopefully) 20mpg.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        Not everyone needs a car to go 70mph with a useless backseat, trust me I know ;)
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        I'd say 20mpg is wishful thinking.
        matthew
        • 5 Years Ago
        @matthew
        My back seat is not useless(it's big enough to make out in) and 70 is slow for me.

        The Smart is a decent pizza delivery wagon, assuming you don't get flattened by a real car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      So it's kind of like the Clubman, but for the Smart car. I'd still rather something like a Honda Fit than this ForTwo. I get the point, but just too many compromises for North American driving.
        • 5 Years Ago
        yep, slow and brave 1 after another, like a cudle of trained sheep.
        : )

        you probally would sh*t in your pants if you drive here.
        : )
      • 5 Years Ago
      I drove a smart car for about a year until trading it in for a Nissan Cube (another weird car, I know). I sort of agree with Luis in that people are generally pretty ignorant when it comes to small cars, especially the smart. On that note however the smart car is not the ideal car for driving around here.

      I can tell you from experience that driving a smart car is a bad experience. Not because it is unsafe or hard to drive, believe it or not you get used to the janky transmission and suspension, but because other drivers HATE you. I cant tell you how many times I nearly got killed getting cut off, or tailgated, even getting stuff thrown at me ON THE HIGHWAY.

      The smart is just completely out of place here and the majority of other drivers simply won't tolerate something so drastically different then their generic looking luxury sedans or SUVs. And looking at their freefalling sales numbers I find it hard to imagine them being around here in 2012.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The problem with the current Smart (at least for me) is it has the worst transmission I have ever experienced. That includes the slipping one in my '71 Challenger from 20 years ago. The car rides terribly, handles poorly and gets pretty poor gas mileage for such a small displacement car. Check out Edmunds long term test for all the gory details. I was one of the first to be offered a Smart as I got on the waiting list early. After driving the car at 2 driving events, and my car at the dealer, I cancelled the purchase. I like what the car stands for, but the execution is poor. The car was well built though, hopefully the 2nd gen model will be a better driver. I look forward to driving the iQ.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks the same size, who fits in the back? Two midgets?
      • 5 Years Ago
      When smart was first launched in Europe, there were plenty who didn't like and still don't. But after a few years with them being on the roads, most other road users have got used to them and accept them.

      I can imagine it wuold be a completely different scenario to driving them in the US though. Because you have the space, and the extremely low fuel costs, even in a crisis, you have been brought up on larger cars than most probably need. Driving a smart on the motorways would be a lot more frightening than it is in the UK

      I should say that I love my smart, I've had 7 in total, including roadsters. I'm married, with no kids, a small dog, and no need for back seats, living in a crowed Edinburgh and want something that stands out and is not just the same old bland eurobox on wheels. It's the perfect car for me. Oh, I have driven mine plenty of times on the motorway in comfort at speeds of 70 easily

      The gearbox on the older smarts is rubbish, but the new one is much improved. Again though, that will never really please american's who prefer auto's to manual. So where as in the uk we use the manual mode more, US will use auto instead. And in auto mode it is pants. It is just a manula gear box with an automatic clutch, so never going to be any good in auto mode compared to a proper auto box!


      Anyways, back on track. It would appear this new model will be a lot wider, which will benefit the handling. the fortwo+2 sounds interesting, but I hope they don't call it that!
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