Tuesday, 9 August 2011

The Smart Car...

...or Smart Fortwo. Yes, the trendy little city-car is well within the reach of the budding sub £2000 motorist. Good little cars too, even if they do annoy the tits off us when they park like this.

Just because you CAN park like this does not mean you SHOULD, okay?

Introduced in 1998 at the Paris Motor Show, the Smart was a new take on the small, nimble city-car. Built by Smart GmbH, a division of Daimler, it was well received, though it did raise some eyebrows as well as bringing a lot of people to the conclusion that in terms of sales, it was destined to fail. Oh, how very wrong they were!

Look at me. I look WEIRD!

People loved it. City dwelling folk, young people who shop at River Island and people
who find it acceptable to pay £5 for a coffee seemed to become the main demographic initially. They loved its quirky looks, its three-stud wheels and most of all they loved its interchangeable body panels. It's all about being individual, yah?

You change all these panels at home, in favour of funky ones. If on the other hand you have a life, don't bother

So trendy, hip young people liked it. That's okay though, because they soon moved onto something else; the New Mini, skinny jeans or maybe watching 'Skins'. Who knows? All we know is that their moving on to new things meant the rest of the world could enjoy the Smart Fortwo. Huzzar!

It has some great real-world qualities. Okay, so it's lacking in any kind of load-space, but that's okay as that isn't what the Smart is about. Plus, if you buy a Smart with trips to Ikea in mind you are, quite frankly, an idiot. Okay, so some big stuff might fit at the expense of making the passenger seat redundant, thus having to leave whoever you came to the shops with stood in the rain, alone, while being very angry at you. Borrow your dad's Volvo for that, load lugging isn't what the Smart was designed for. It's about getting out and having fun, something it facilitates with ease. The engines were tiny 600cc or 700cc petrol or 800cc diesel numbers - all with a turbo bolted onto them. As such economy was high and performance wasn't too bad either - 0-62 in oh, er, 15.5 seconds. Hmm, moving on.

Transmission (on the first generation Smart) was a six-speed auto which, while not the smoothest of gearboxes, still managed to be fun if combined with the paddle-shift option. Think of it like an Aston Martin, but er, nothing at all like one to drive. Yes, that is a pretty tenuous example. Ignore that. LOOK AT THIS PICTURE...

This is where you go. Sunglasses advised

There you have it, the Smart Fortwo. It's cute, it's funky and you'll annoy the pants of fellow motorists every time you come to park it. It's great on fuel and it's cheap to insure, too. It's a win of a win of a win.

Look at me, I'm the correct car for the blog!

Here's a link to a bevy of Smart Fortwos on Autotrader. Fill your boots! Oh, and if you're concerned that its size my hinder safety, just watch this. The Smart is one tough little cookie, think of it as a Jack Russell made of granite...

And a final word of warning. Should you think to yourself 'I know, I might make my Smart look like a Mustang' please ignore the urge. It's not going to work out how you might hope...