Driven by a 74bhp electric motor and a 17.6kWh battery, the car will hit 37mph in just 4.8 seconds and hit a 77mph top speed

Mercedes’ Smart brand has launched the production version of the long-promised electric variant of its two-seater city car. Order books opened today for both the coupe and cabrio versions of the Smart fortwo electric drive.

Driven by a 74bhp electric motor and a 17.6kWh battery, the car will hit 37mph in just 4.8 seconds and hit a 77mph top speed. Smart claims that the car has a range of 90 miles.

Sales start in Germany this summer. There’s no news on UK sales, but they are expected to begin before the end of the year.

There will be two ways of buying the new car. One sees the buyer renting the battery for 65 Euros per month and the other sees the buyer purchasing the battery outright.

In Germany (with 19 per cent VAT), the Coupe with the ‘sale and care’ pack costs 18,900 euros (£15,152) and 65 euros (£52) per month battery rental. The cabrio costs 22,000 euros (£17,637). Buying the battery outright raises the purchase price to 23,680 euros (£18,984) and 26,770 euros (£21,461).

The introduction of the electric Smart is part of a £160m investment in the Hambach factory in south-west France. £40m has been spent on a new, more environmentally sound, paint shop. Since the factory was opened in 1997, some 1.3 million Smarts have been built.


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12 June 2012

That's strange... maybe it's just me seeing things, but I'm 80% sure I saw an electric smart on a lorry a few weeks back, but the article says it's not in the UK yet!

12 June 2012

The one factor mitigating against any micro car, Smart in particular, is the utterly deplorable state of our roads. Micro cars are barely equipped to cope.

If the Smart EV is a slow seller that will be translated as, no one wants an EV, whereas the actual truth in times of delapidated infrastructure and unemployment is, anybody with any sense and a limited budget will buy a second-hand car that can actually survive intact violently disrupted tarmac that our councillors think should be left unrepaired in preference to sending regiments off to costly wars, leaving our roads to suffer more degredation and extremes of weather plus 44 ton big rigs, that is, pot holes, loose cobbles, lava flow washboard surfaces, and countless roadworks ...

Cars and SUVs that can survive those conditions for a few months without rattle or repair are preferable to a clever micro car probably ahead of its time ... and our roads.

12 June 2012

It's still cute. It hasn't aged at all. I remember first seeing (lots and lots) in Milan, and I just loved it. I still do. I confess I have never driven one, an opportunity has never arisen, but somewhere inside me there is a Brabus wanting to have keys in my pocket!! Electric version, yep why not - not sold on the French cars reliability - so I would look at this

what's life without imagination

12 June 2012

Electric cars are best in the city environment, and unlike a Twizzy this has doors. I know it costs a little more, but it probably makes it the best electric car proposition so far

12 June 2012

Big premium for the cabrio but I think the cabrio will be a much enhanced experience in an electric car, a more social vehicle, removing both the bodywork and the noise between you and other road users.  With the Vat rebate in the UK the Cabrio will be about £17K which is a little steep but right now a unique vehicle.

13 June 2012

Is this car elligible for any subsidy in this country, or in Germany? And do the prices quoted include or exclude this? 

Interesting that the prices quoted suggest a battery life of around 6 years (where the rental cost meets the £3832 extra cost of the battery), so I suspect that rental would be the preferred option - especially if the user frequently fast charges the battery pack. But at what stage would the battery pack be replaced - when the capacity drops to say 80% of a new battery, or 70%, 50%?

I assume that the battery capacity drops of fairly progressively, but it would be interesting to know how manufacturers propose to handle this - or maybe they will simply agree to replace when the customer complains of limited range during the first cold winter.


13 June 2012

The Mitsubishi i-MVEC has been around for a couple of years now, and nobody buys that either. And then, there's the electric Renault Zoe.


13 June 2012

Once again, we have an "alternative" to the age-old "internal combustion engined vehicle" that makes absolutely no economic sense in owning ...

The quoted price of £15,152 (plus £52 per month for the battery lease) - which is what us Brits WONT be paying once the "extras", such as converting the vehicle to RHD are factored in - is a joke considering that you can buy a diesel Smart that returns 86 mpg and emits 86g/km CO2 from only £10,300 ...

And let us NOT forget that whilst electric vehicles emit no CO2 from the "tailpipe", the power stations that provide the electricity to recharge the battery DO .. and LOTS OF IT!!!

13 June 2012

Suzuki QT wrote:

And let us NOT forget that whilst electric vehicles emit no CO2 from the "tailpipe", the power stations that provide the electricity to recharge the battery DO .. and LOTS OF IT!!!

Depends on where the power was produced, Nuclear and Wind power (being used more and more every year and Denmark will be a 50 % by 2020) produce very little CO2. 

You mentioned the financial benefit of diesel, well today the WHO issued the following:

"Exhaust fumes from diesel engines do cause cancer, a panel of experts working for the World Health Organization says. It concluded that the exhausts were definitely a cause of lung cancer and may also cause tumours in the bladder."

The progress made in plug-in Hybrid/ battery powered cars by pretty much all the car makers has pretty much put the doubters in corner and they're fast disappearing 


Hydrogen cars just went POP

13 June 2012

…over a ZOE? 


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