Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Smart Car Proves Smart Car Proves to Be a Survivor to Be a Survivor

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Smart Car Proves Smart Car Proves to Be a Survivor to Be a Survivor

Article excerpt


PREDICTIONS can be notoriously wide of the mark. Just a decade or so ago some soothsayers said we would all be driving around in little smart fortwos as the world''s oil supplies started to dwindle.

Mind you, go back a bit further and there were those who said we would have cars that would fly or be able to take to the water in amphibious fashion when the occasion demanded it.

While we''re not all driving around in ''smart cars'' as they''ve become known, the smart for two is still very much with us and hasn''t changed all that much in the intervening years.

It could well have been one of those quirky creations that went the way of the Sinclair C5 but it''s proved to be a resilient survivor - unlike smart''s stylish roadster and the forfour supermini which have been sacrificed to achieve greater profitability.

Its biggest selling point is still its quirkiness and I expect many buy it for this reason.

While it''s marketed as an affordable alternative to a conventional car, it isn''t quite as cheap as you might expect, so many buyers probably buy it as a style statement as much as anything else.

While the overall appearance of the smart fortwo hasn''t changed that much the car certainly has. The latest version is an allnew car from the ground up.

The most distinctive difference is its compact dimensions have grown slightly in a bid to improve pedestrian safety, offer better rear impact protection and improved legroom.

More legroom is definitely a bonus and that enhanced rear impact protection is to be welcomed too. One of the things I always disliked about a fortwo was feeling kind of vulnerable.

With its high driving position it rather bizarrely has a big car kind of feel when you''re behind the wheel.

But look over your shoulder and all of a sudden you''re acutely aware of its compact dimensions. …

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