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They look like something off a golf course, but soon these smart cars will be coming to a street near you.

David Schembri, President of Smart USA, says "this is a serious automobile. It has a top speed of 90 miles per hour, it's comfortable to drive and when you're sitting inside you think you're in a heavy automobile."

They'll make parking easier. They're cost effective, starting at $14,000, and they get about 40 miles-per-gallon.

But, what about safety?

David Schembri says "it's highlighted by this safety cell that acts much like a roll cage similar to NASCAR, it allows all the energy in case of a front crash to go underneath the vehicle to the rear protecting the occupants."

Smart Car USA is currently taking orders online, but the company says the cars won't actually arrive until January.

Critics of the Smart Car say despite the company line, these are in fact city cars and won't work as a utility vehicle for most people.

Steven Luke, KNSD-TV, San Diego, California
Last updated: 6/11/2007 8:45:05 AM

http://www.wbir.com/auto/story.aspx?storyid=46133&provider=gnews
 
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