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.