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CAUTION - click bait ahead!

Obviously some people just don't get our beloved smart - ICE or ED . . .

"Why the Smart Fortwo ED May Be the Most Pointless Car on Earth"


"From where I'm standing, the Fortwo ED seems like a car that was specifically designed to appeal to no one" - so says Talon Homer.

The Smart Fortwo ED may be the most Pointless Car on Earth - The Drive

https://twitter.com/Motor_Friend
Well.... Did you read the whole article? He clearly says that he wouldn't have much of a problem with the Smart band if the ED was offered alongside the gasoline variant, but doesn't see a point to there ONLY being a 58 mile range electric Smart. This is pretty much exactly how every single one of us Smart owners felt after the announcement and closure of 2/3 of all the (already few) Smart Centers in the country.

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
 

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Well.... Did you read the whole article?
Well . . . YES I read the whole article and do get his point of view.

His "in the beginning, 2008" smart description - "The smart Fortwo is built on compromise. At the expense of speed and comfort, it is about the smallest, lightest thing that can legally be called a car" was hardly complimentary toward the ICE version?

Fast forward to 2018 - "If Smart were simply offering the ED as an alternative to their gas cars, I wouldn't have much of a problem with it."

Pretty much beating a dead horse as the smart ED is a PURPOSE BUILT "EV City Car" with a range of 60-70 mile and the smart ICE is no longer a FUTURE product because Daimler said so.

"That, combined with a three-hour charge time, would stretch the four-hour drive from Charlotte to Atlanta to well over 12 hours."

I do get where he is coming from as I live in Charlotte and do drive to Atlanta BUT since I own both a smart ICE & ED, charge time is never a problem. :shrug:
 

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The article is chocked full of inaccuracies as well:

The ED was developed in conjunction with Tesla, so it at least must be fast, right?
I don't know why people keep saying this. The partnership with Tesla ended with the Phase II ED program. Phase III EDs (2012 and newer) do not have Tesla parts or DNA in them. The Tesla battery cars were so bad that the partnership with Tesla is honestly nothing to brag about. They had a glacial 0-60 (compared to even the ICE), a SOC that you could watch fall in real time during acceleration, and even worse range than the Toyota iQ EV. I still remember that after smart dealers couldn't even lease all 250 of the things, some of them tried to sell remaining stock off at a cool $41+K each. The cars were never meant to be sold. At program end, they were supposed to be sent back to smart. Instead they were just scrapped...hence where all of these ED suspension parts are coming from on eBay.

If Smart were simply offering the ED as an alternative to their gas cars, I wouldn't have much of a problem with it. Unless your name starts with E, and ends with lon, it doesn't seem like a grand idea to put all your eggs in the electric basket. Especially when that basket has a range of 58 miles. This new Smart Car is not versatile enough to be an only car, and is way too expensive for what it offers. From where I'm standing, the Fortwo ED seems like a car that was specifically designed to appeal to no one.
This is actually a fair statement to make if it had a little more nuance. The problem isn't putting all of your eggs into the EV basket, the problem is how advanced your EV is. We're at the point where you can buy multi-hundred mile range EVs from multiple companies for not that bad prices. Sub-100 mile EVs are slowly becoming obsolete by EVs that can go 2x, 3x, sometimes 4x the miles for not much more money. So smart voluntarily giving itself a lower range rating (even if it can go much further than 58 miles) was a bad move.
 

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So smart voluntarily giving itself a lower range rating (even if it can go much further than 58 miles) was a bad move.
True from our "long distance" perspective in N.A. BUT, as a "World" EV City Car in Europe is probably right sized?
 

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So smart voluntarily giving itself a lower range rating (even if it can go much further than 58 miles) was a bad move.

Not a bad move; likely a tested and defensible one that took into account diverse climates, driving styles, speed, HVAC usage, etc., rather than ideal conditions.

Is range testing not standardized for EVs? Hard to see that being a capricious process of volunteerism.
 

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From the mothership:

Hello Everyone,

I apologize for my long absence. Please know it was not by choice, and if you do not wish for me to continue posting, I understand. I hope you've all been well!

I also hope I can shed a little bit of light on this topic.

For 2017, a new battery degradation factor was voluntarily included in the EPA's rating that accounts for battery aging over its useful service life. This is partly why the text of a Monroney label reads "When fully charged, vehicle can travel about..." This number gives the consumer a better idea of what to expect on those 'worst case' days.

Additionally, while the 453 still has a 17.6 kWh battery pack, it is actually a completely new unit from the one used in the 451 and is our 4th generation of smart battery. The 453 battery is made up of 96 cells vs. 93 in the 451, and is 44 lbs lighter. More of that stored energy is also accessible for moving the vehicle than the outgoing car.

The electric motor has changed as well, and is now a three-phase synchronous air-cooled unit.

-Keith
Basically, the EPA added a battery degradation factor that totally isn’t necessary, but smart USA decided that it was a good idea to make it the official number.

I think maybe it would have been best to use current EPA official methodology and apply the 58 mile number in fine print somewhere.

It seems to date, smart is the only manufacturer to do this and there isn’t any warning on the Monroney that the 453 ED is rated differently than competing EVs. So the public just sees 58 miles without any indication that it can actually do double the advertised number.

And Europe is actually a good point. This is a true EV city car. It’s true that the 58 mile number wouldn’t be bad in smart’s home in Europe. Though weirdly, the car is advertised as having a range of “up to 99 miles” out there.
 

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True from our "long distance" perspective in N.A. BUT, as a "World" EV City Car in Europe is probably right sized?
Size wise smart's are very handy when travelling in the larger urban areas but range is the killer where I stay in southern France. For example it's approx 100 kms from where I arrive by air to my studio with maybe one charging station on route. In the older towns were cars weren't really in mind when the streets were laid out the smart is very hand both in terms of being able to maneuver and park. Also very handy in Paris where parking is always a pain, and yes I actually like driving there. Although the drive down the autoroute from Paris to where I stay can be rather harrowing in a 451 and an impossible drive in an EV at approximately 750 kms.

Over here I can see why smart didn't catch on, wife just bought Ram Rebel which is huge and more than what 1 person needs but it is nice and rather intimidating and perhaps that is another reason why the smart didn't fair so well. But for trips into Toronto where parking is getting increasingly difficult to find and ridiculously expensive we don't even consider taking the truck because we will get to where we are going and be unable to park it. Out in the burbs, not a problem as Costco have oversize parking spots...

I think though having lived in France and driven/owned a number of French automobiles (Renault, Citroen, smart) I think the French are somewhat dailed into weird quirky vehicles and therefore the smart fit right in.
 

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First: Who is the author and why the h*ll should I care what he thinks?

Second: I know several people who would come no where near needing more than the 58 mile range commuting round trip to work and run a few errands between charges.

All I want to know when car shopping is, are there unknown issues with the car I should be aware of. Beyond that I don't give a flip what other people "think".
 

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Size wise smart's are very handy when travelling in the larger urban areas but range is the killer where I stay in southern France. For example it's approx 100 kms from where I arrive by air to my studio with maybe one charging station on route. In the older towns were cars weren't really in mind when the streets were laid out the smart is very hand both in terms of being able to maneuver and park. Also very handy in Paris where parking is always a pain, and yes I actually like driving there. Although the drive down the autoroute from Paris to where I stay can be rather harrowing in a 451 and an impossible drive in an EV at approximately 750 kms.

Over here I can see why smart didn't catch on, wife just bought Ram Rebel which is huge and more than what 1 person needs but it is nice and rather intimidating and perhaps that is another reason why the smart didn't fair so well. But for trips into Toronto where parking is getting increasingly difficult to find and ridiculously expensive we don't even consider taking the truck because we will get to where we are going and be unable to park it. Out in the burbs, not a problem as Costco have oversize parking spots...

I think though having lived in France and driven/owned a number of French automobiles (Renault, Citroen, smart) I think the French are somewhat dailed into weird quirky vehicles and therefore the smart fit right in.
Yea... no matter how much Smart (or us owners) tried to explain it to people, they just could never seem to get over the whole "death trap" mentality they have for the Smart. I still have people say to me "I wouldn't want to get hit in that thing"... to which i usually reply that i wouldn't really want to get hit in ANY car, but at least mine has a reinforced steel roll cage.

I just think it's funny that here in the US, it seems gas prices drive people's car buying choices. Gas cost is low, "Ooh, let's go buy a truck/SUV". Gas starts going up, "Maybe we should buy a sedan". And the sad part is these people buy cars without really "knowing" how to drive them. If you can't take an inside corner without ending up part way in the outside lane... you shouldn't be driving a larger vehicle.
 

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To make matters even worse, the prices of cars and the cost of living keep raising while income remains stagnant. So some people end up buying these SUVs and are instantly underwater before you even account for the cost of petrol. Then when petrol goes up, they’re stuck with a vehicle they can’t afford or have to trade it in and go further under.

Many analysts believe that the next economic bubble to break will be the auto market. Actually, John Oliver has a solid segment on how sad the auto loan industry is right now.

Warning: Course Language!

https://youtube.com/watch?v=4U2eDJnwz_s
 

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To make matters even worse, the prices of cars and the cost of living keep raising while income remains stagnant. So some people end up buying these SUVs and are instantly underwater before you even account for the cost of petrol. Then when petrol goes up, they’re stuck with a vehicle they can’t afford or have to trade it in and go further under.

Many analysts believe that the next economic bubble to break will be the auto market. Actually, John Oliver has a solid segment on how sad the auto loan industry is right now.

Warning: Course Language!

https://youtube.com/watch?v=4U2eDJnwz_s
Since 2007, I’m still been waiting for fuel prices to go up. The smart car manager, bought my trade in. A loaded Grand Cherokee, back in 2008. She’s still driving it. The car buying Public, want SUV, small crossover. There are very practical. Families with children. Used for getting supplies gradening, hardware, sports etc. Why spend, or lease a $30K, smart EV. Just Go up to the local Honda dealership, buy a CRV, HRV, Fit. For under that price. In 5 years, they retain 56% of their resale value.

Mini, no matter how big the vehicle have gotten. They are still the only successful city car brand, here. Their $$$$. They offer a small crossover. They understand the market place. The Mini Countryman. smart, has had ever opportunity to expand the brand here. The Countryman’s are everwhere here.

Our city use to be full of smart cars. Haven’t see one in months. I never seen a 453 on the road yet. I doubt, I ever see a ED. Since the MB dealership decided to drop the brand.
 

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To make matters even worse, the prices of cars and the cost of living keep raising while income remains stagnant.
Stats like this are prone to errors in citation and interpretation, sometimes accidental, sometimes not.

In nominal (dollar bill) terms, wages have been rising. In nominal (dollar bill terms), cars have not been rising as quickly as wages. Some sources suggest that the price of cars, in inflation-adjusted terms, have been flat over a long period of time. It's also important to note that the car you're buying today, even the lowest end car, is probably a much better and safer car than the best car you could have bought in 1997 or 1977. ABS, airbags, electronic fuel and spark management, etc, etc.

When people say "cost of living keeps going up, but wages aren't", I find that they more often citing flat "real wages" without understanding what that means (real wages are, by definition, adjusted for inflation, making for a meaningless comparison against nominal [not inflation adjusted] cost of living). I find that journalists sometimes juxtapose these two statements, sometimes out of ignorance that they're not saying anything meaningful and sometimes with full awareness of that but realizing that it will get them, clicks, likes, tweets, pins, shares, and eyeballs.

Here's a chart of nominal (dollar bills, not inflation adjusted) figures:
Inflation: Price Changes 1997 to 2017 - The Big Picture


There's a lot to be concerned about in a chart like that, but the price of new cars isn't one of them, IMO.
 

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Since 2007, I’m still been waiting for fuel prices to go up. The smart car manager, bought my trade in. A loaded Grand Cherokee, back in 2008. She’s still driving it. The car buying Public, want SUV, small crossover. There are very practical. Families with children. Used for getting supplies gradening, hardware, sports etc. Why spend, or lease a $30K, smart EV. Just Go up to the local Honda dealership, buy a CRV, HRV, Fit. For under that price. In 5 years, they retain 56% of their resale value.

Mini, no matter how big the vehicle have gotten. They are still the only successful city car brand, here. Their $$$$. They offer a small crossover. They understand the market place. The Mini Countryman. smart, has had ever opportunity to expand the brand here. The Countryman’s are everwhere here.

Our city use to be full of smart cars. Haven’t see one in months. I never seen a 453 on the road yet. I doubt, I ever see a ED. Since the MB dealership decided to drop the brand.
The NA car buying market is crazy if you ask me. I grew up in the era of very fuel inefficient cars (think worse than 10mpg) and cheap gas. Just before we went metric I recall gas was around a buck a gallon and when I first started riding an MC it was .25 cents a gallon. So $1.09 a litre is considered cheap up here which is still expensive to me so it's funny how folks have somehow become used to and even think now that gas prices are 'good'. Cars however have become a lot more fuel efficient and that I guess is the other disconnect with folks who dismissed smart. For such a tiny car it didn't get fantastic fuel economy, not totally horrible but not what I suspect many were expecting.

Yup I find the Mini hideous now, the first new version was actually quite cute, granted I think Ford has upglified the Mustang and GM the Camaro and Vette.

Up here I see 450's and 451's quite often but not many 453's which are also really pricey. For example this, 2017 smart fortwo prime cab LORINSER, 5-Speed - Peterborough $32,495 | autoTRADER.ca

Though for one less loaded they are in the $19,000 CAN range for a gas 2017 Pure.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
They're going to have that one for awhile...
At $32,495 CAN, true that!

While the Lorin$er wheels are a nice upgrade, even @ $25,369 US this 5-speed CABRIO will be a lot queen till the ground thaws...
 

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The sad part is that someone with more $$ than brains will probably "belly up to the bar" and pay.... or maybe not. Nice example of a now discontinued model however.
 

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People just don't understand, that smart gas vehicles were tuned for PERFORMANCE. The biggest issue with the 451 was that the platform was dragged out a little long, 9 years or so in the U.S. When it dropped in 2008, it was rather sophisticated, regardless of the dead weight negativity from ~some~ critics. The 1.0L 3-cylinder used 91 premium, that's what gave it the 70hp/68 lbs-ft torque rating.

1.0L 3's very easily could have developed 50-60hp and less torque of similar numbers. Relative to displacement and natural-aspiration engine design, the 2008 to 2015 gas smart fortwo's developed a healthy amount of engine power. Many people just don't know that because they never owned cars with 1.0L 3-cylinders before. The smart was their first one.

Fast forwarding to today's gas smart vehicles, they are clearly geared and designed for sports performance. The smart 453 is straight up fast. And if folks knew about how the 2017 gas smarts felt, especially with the BRABUS shifting and tuning, they would realize that the smart 453 w/BRABUS is a FAST car within the confines of city traffic. It is nowhere near slow. :nerd:
 

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Discussion Starter #20
People just don't understand, that smart gas vehicles were tuned for PERFORMANCE.

And if folks knew about how the 2017 gas smarts felt, especially with the BRABUS shifting and tuning, they would realize that the smart 453 w/BRABUS is a FAST car within the confines of city traffic. It is nowhere near slow.
While I fully agree with your premise, how few examples of the MY17 smart 453 Brabus were available in the United States?

Where they weren't carrying a dealer markup, the MY17 smart Brabus sold rather quickly to a handful of LUCKY smart enthusiasts!
 
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