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I was pretty impressed when I first saw them too, but they were never headed for the U.S.
And as @jwight mentioned... they have their share of problems.

Jim
 

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I saw this in Madeira. Had never seen one before, and knew if anyone would know anything about it馃槀. I want one.

View attachment 68352 View attachment 68353
Would be nice to rent one of these on a non-rainy day. I think they would have done ok in the US but other established roadsters like the Miata would likely have quickly killed it. Still, a smart Roadster is super cool.
 

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Smart roadster was not imported to US, few samples for sale somehow made it here. Like that body design BUT interior dash & vents, steering wheel are quite strange looking. There was rear glass section that made car look better, also turbo version that was not street legal in Germany.There were some engine problems reported, making this vehicle less desirable.
 

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Everybody wants one, until they own one... :eek:
Correct.....I had one from new for two years (the length of warranty back then in the UK), and although it drove as a drivers car, low centre of gravity so it hugged corners, the bad news was it was never well built, the quality was poor, causing many rain water leaks from everywhere, door mirrors, door speakers, soft top roof, trunk and front bulkhead which leaked onto the SAM unit so needed replacement. The car just smelt of damp all the time.

Also another common fault was a bad interference fit on the steering rack, which caused low rumble noises on rough roads. Only solution at the time was a new steering rack, I got that. Finally and this was the final straw, was that the folding soft top roof when moving back, folded sometimes in the opposite direction, ie, some V shaped folds going up and some V shaped folds going down, so got fouled up and you had to get out and sort the creases in the folds. Considering all the Fortwo cabrios I have had, including the 453 cabrio I have now, the roof never did that, and they were all bone dry in the cabin.

Its a pity, it was a lovely looking car, quite fast, and fun to drive, but was never out the dealership garage getting sorted. No wonder Smart stopped production early on the roadster, as it was costing them a fortune on warranty repairs. I sold mine when the warranty ran out, it even had the expensive optional three spoke wheels. I traded it in for a new metal folding roof, two seater convertible (different make).

 

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One other thing I forgot to mention about the design, and it was quite funny.

There is a row of buttons on the dash, all identical looking, and one is the rear trunk open button, as it is a spring loaded trunk. Now if you are standing at the traffic lights and hit the button by accident as you think you are hitting another button, its so easily done. Then instead of racing off at the lights, you get that embarrassing feeling as the trunk flies open, and everyone about you is laughing their heads off :p

You then have to get out and slam the trunk down, and clamber back into the cabin LOL.
 

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One other thing I forgot to mention about the design, and it was quite funny.

There is a row of buttons on the dash, all identical looking, and one is the rear trunk open button, as it is a spring loaded trunk. Now if you are standing at the traffic lights and hit the button by accident as you think you are hitting another button, its so easily done. Then instead of racing off at the lights, you get that embarrassing feeling as the trunk flies open, and everyone about you is laughing their heads off :p

You then have to get out and slam the trunk down, and clamber back into the cabin LOL.
Gotta be "smarter" than this smart Roadster to drive it!
 

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V-6 version
It was just a prototype with only 10 being made, and never was a production model and never made it to public roads. The standard roadster was fast enough, well if felt fast, as it was as low as a skateboard to the ground LOL. Wikipedia says...

 
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