Soo.. I'm having a baby soon and unfortunately I might not be able to get a car on time. Plus I leased my smart car (stupid mistake) so I am still paying it off.. Has anyone had an infant in a smart car? How did the car seat and stroller fit?
Congratulations, on your new born baby. Personally, I would never allow a infant, in the front seat, of any vehicle. “Airbag” They belong facing rear wise, in a backseat of a vehicle. You might be able to put a umbrella stroller in the rear of of a smart car. I doubt a full size one. Then you got all the other necessities, diaper bags etc. That go along with infant care.
If your driving a older 451 smart car, and plan to use that seat. Go to the owners manual. Page 42-43. Child restraint. You’ll need to turn of the passenger air bag off, on that side of the car. There are full instruction, on how to do that.
Since you said you're leasing and still paying it off, I'm assuming you have one of the new smart cars... According to the manual, the front passenger seat is able to detect when child restraints are being used (along with the weight of the occupant) and will deactivate the front airbag. I have not tried it myself, but that's how it's supposed to work and I don't see why it wouldn't.
I have not had kids of my own but I helped raise a baby a few years ago and the trunk space in a smart car will not fit any sort of useful stroller. Those things are way bigger than you would think they are, and they usually do not fold into any sort of manageable shape. The biggest problem is usually the wheels on the stroller because they stick out awkwardly from the folded frame that might otherwise fit in a smaller space. Granted, I hear the baby care technology has come quite a bit further since I last bothered to look into the stuff, but I also know it's all gotten bigger too, with increased safety standards.
I've thought about this quite a bit because I intend to have kids in the future and will hopefully be keeping my smart when that time rolls around... but it's really not a suitable car for transporting children except under most dire of circumstances. Like if your baby is sick and you need to drive to the hospital ASAP. You probably won't even need a stroller with you, just the car seat and the bag of stuff - sure, it would work. For everything else I would seriously just recommend a taxi or an uber/lyft to save yourself the hassle because there's just no way a smart will fit everything a newborn needs for an outing. If you have friends or family that live in manageable distance, you can do what we do, and ask to swap cars with them for a day if they don't need the capability of their (likely) larger vehicle. Make sure you both put each other under each other's insurance just to be covered. Bring a blanket to put on their back seat beneath your car seat and a tarp to put beneath the stroller to keep it nice and tidy for them. Poke around and see if there's car shares or coops around if you don't have family or friends you can do the swap with. It's worth it to see if you can go and talk to the company you're leasing from to if they have any backdoor options for people in unusual situations (for example, to keep you as a customer, they might be willing to waive the lease termination fee if you agree to lease one of their bigger vehicles, or something like that).
Both the 451 and 453 have automatic airbag shutoffs. Also checkout the GB Pockit stroller. It folds up into a really small package. Diaper bag can fit in the passenger footwell. It's definitely not ideal, but the car can work.
I have wrestled with this since my grandson was born 5 years ago. His mom (ever married my son) has strictly forbidden us using the smart for child transportation as it does not have a rear seat and in her mind is the only legal place a car seat can be installed. I tried pointing out that there are attachment points and instructions for mounting a car seat in my smart from the manufacturer, but she swears up and down that it is against the law to put a kid in the front seat. Funny how they allow pickup trucks to have car seats and that isn't an issue(??)I just gave up the battle as it was not worth the energy to argue with a closed mind.
According to the NHSTA, it is safer to have the seat in the rear seat, but it is not a law. At 5 years old he really feels he is missing out by not being able to ride in Grandpa's smart car and loves to climb in the back and lay down.(only when parked) The day is fast approaching when he will be tall enough to satisfy the 'doesn't need a car seat' height requirement.
for now I just avoid the battle and take the Land rover when we go anywhere. He is eyeing the 3rd row fold down jump seats...and those big hills with the water crossings at the bottom...
Mercedes sells EXPENSIVE seats that are supposed to be compatible with the seat sensor to disable the airbag. See if you can try a seat, not necessarily Mercedes brand, with a bag of rice or something similar to verify the airbag for the passenger seat is off.
Whence tooling around to Army in Minimus, I totally forgot about the airbag on thw passenger side. I played Hell trying to get the seatbelt clicked so as to cancel the airbag. The 451 has 4 airbags and the 453 6. The Tridion steel cage is based off of a fighter jet cockpit. I would totally haul my granddaughter in my Smart with no regurts! Congrats and good luck with the New Edition!