Smart USA sold 2,559 Smart Fortwo's in July, in the United States. Approximately 13,958 have been sold so far in 2008. That equals about 2000 units per month. Sales estimates for 2008 from the first reports were to be of 20,000 units. Sales numbers have been increased to 24,000 to 27,500 units.
The Smart Fortwo wasn't designed for interstate driving. It is a city car! But it performs well at speeds under 60mph, in spite of its bumpy ride.
The Smart U.S. version comes with one drive train combination, a 71hp three-cylinder 1.0-liter engine with an automated manual transmission. Power from the 71hp gas motor is satisfactory.
An automated transmission has no clutch pedal and operates like an automatic and the cars electronic controls shift gears.
The transmissions shortcoming is inadequate shift quality from the five-speed automated manual transmission. The execution never matches what a conventional manual transmission can offer.
The Smart Fortwo's bodies are plastic panels, and in some cases do not fit together well.
The 2008 Smart comes with a wide range of safety features, including electronic stability control, seat-mounted side air bags and antilock brakes. The Smart car chassis has plenty of high-strength steel for crash protection.
The Smart Fortwo requires premium fuel and has the best fuel economy of any gasoline-powered car that's not a hybrid.
Although its ratings from the EPA of 33mpg in town and 41mpg on the freeway are shoddier than most expected.
The Smart car is so tiny that it has no competitors. So, basically Penske's smart centers have more than enough reservations and as we reported over a year ago could sell upwards of 40,000 smart car units this year. Unfortunately this will not happen.
Prices for the 2008 Smart Fortwo start at $11,590 for a base model, called the Fortwo Pure. The upper end Smart Passion coupe starts at $13,590, while the Passion convertible costs $16,590.
Now it's merely a matter of how fast the Smartville plant can produce and ship them to the U.S.
Our opinion is they will come up a little short for 2008!
For those wanting to purchase a Smart, you may want to wait a little longer. The Smart ForTwo is about to get more planet friendly and greener.
Smart GmbH, has made public that they will be making 3 enhanced and resourceful models promising to save you money and also help our planet.
The one we like the best is the Micro Hybrid Drive or MHD. This car has no batteries or electric motor like a normal hybrid. Instead, it comes with a starter generator. This means the ForTwo can stop and restart its engine when needed.
It works something like this. When you come to a stop and you keep your foot on the brake, the engine cuts out. It restarts as soon as you lift off the gas pedal. The starter generator also disengages when your cars speed falls to 5mph or less.
They evaluate a fuel reduction equivalent to 8 per cent on total fuel usage and 13 per cent for in town driving.
Further into the future is the Electric Smart - or ED. It comes with a 41bhp electric motor, acceleration is quite strong. It has a 69 mph top speed and the range of 70 miles and is truly suitable for around town.
A full charge takes eight hours and costs only pennies.
They also have the 799cc CDI turbo diesel, which gets a best over all gas rating of all car at 85mpg, and emits a low 88g/km of CO2, a figure no hybrid can beat.
The car is a snail with 0-60mph taking 19.8 seconds. Its low emissions mean it's exempt (UK) from the road fund license.
As normal when it comes to getting these types of cars here there is no real news on when or if Daimler will make them available for the U.S.?
Daimler states smart, GmbH, builder of the ultra-compact Smart car, saw its sales rise 27% worldwide in July, with 12400 Smart cars sold compared to 9800 a year ago. The car went on sale in the US this January for the first time after years of promises from all concerned.
Smart car producer Daimler AG said its Mercedes-Benz Cars division had sold 105,100 vehicles globally last month, a one-percent increase from last year, with demand for its fuel-efficient two-seater Smart car setting a new record.
Stuttgart-based Daimler brands include Mercedes-Benz, Smart, AMG and Maybach.