By on April 1, 2015


Having made its world debut last month in Geneva, the 2016 smart fortwo took the ramp in North America at the 2015 New York Auto Show.

The third-gen version of the city car gets its power from a rear-mounted turbo-three putting 88 horses and 100 lb-ft of torque out of the back via either a five-speed manual or dual-clutch automatic. The car also gains 100mm-wider track than the outgoing model, while increased use of high-strength steel should improve occupant safety.

Pricing was not announced at this time, but the new smart fortwo is set to hit showrooms in the United States this autumn.

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13 Comments on “New York 2015: 2016 smart fortwo Debuts In North America...”

  • avatar

    Well that’s pretty gross looking. This car certainly didn’t need an EV grille + offroad treatment. I can’t help but feel these are just not really made for the US. They’re just a novelty, and you can always get more car for the same money, which in America is desirable.

    And whoever had the idea to use the “tailor made” trim name/program in that sort of font should be fired. It looks amateur and childish, like something someone on Pintrest made. I’m sure Geozinger can tell us which terrible font it is.

  • avatar

    well as a car2go user I’ve developed a certain affection for them. Last French car you can drive…

    Seats looks much improved. Parking sensor on back? Could be useful as they aren’t as easy to park as you might imagine. Power steering? I actually like the steerng wheel, and with a stick might be ok. The EV has great potential.

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      Isn’t the US Yaris made in France now? You can probably pick up one of the last Veyrons if you’re really into French-built cars designed outside of France.

  • avatar

    I have a Smart dealership in my neighborhood, so I’ll enjoy seeing these driving around as people test drive and then proceed to not buy them.

  • avatar

    This would be the third generation.

    I like the tail light treatment and I really like those rims. I don’t understand nor like that every new vehicle has to have an angry “face”.

    The hood height above these fairly large looking wheels emphasizes how ridiculous the CUVization of everything seems.

  • avatar

    This looks like it should have pre-dated the current version, this being sold in the 90s with over inflated bumper, though the pre-smashed hood is a wierd accent. Then in about 2005 they release the current smart4-2 that cleans up the wierd 90s mess.
    Either way the only thing keeping this car alive (in America) is car sharing services, once they realize how much cheaper to purchase and repair a versa is, it may be game over.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    I sold off my old smart because I needed a hatchback with more cargo space. Now that I have one (and a truck), this one is on my list of possible DDs around the end of the decade.

    • 0 avatar

      OK, maybe you can answer my question. I’m baffled by these – why pick one over a Toyota IQ or a Fiat 500?

      The Toyota gives you Toyota reliability in basically the same form factor, plus a couple extra seatbelts in a pinch.

      The 500 is almost the same size, far more attractive, and has a real back seat. Plus you have a huge array of options and whatever it is that makes European things “better”.

      I’m not in the market, so maybe I’m missing something. Why a Smart??

      • 0 avatar

        Scion iQ is dead in the US – dead – dead – deadski.

      • 0 avatar
        bumpy ii

        In my case, neither the iQ nor the 500 were sold in the US in 2008.

        Looking at it in 2015, the iQ is/was FWD and only sold with a drab CVT. The 500 is more compelling, but is still FWD and significantly heavier. The smart, on the other hand, is RWD and could be had with a manual steering rack (not sure about the new one). There is also an intangible sense of going ‘all the way’ and getting the shortest and lightest car possible.

      • 0 avatar
        Splorg McGillicuddy

        By Kansas measurements, the Fiat 500 may be “almost the same size,” but by San Francisco standards there is a mighty huge difference – they’re not in the same class. I have a 2013 fortwo because I can park the damned thing anywhere (Got rid of my Elise because you can’t street park that in San Francisco and expect it to be there the next day). My standard spot for it is between two driveways where not even the Scion iQ can fit. It’s also rear wheel drive and rear-engined. Of course, the crappy transmission is well-known, but this replacement model offers a real manual transmission. Certainly upgrade-worthy since it’s the worst trait of the current car. I got it due to size constraints, but it’s really grown on me a lot. It may get replaced with the new Miata, but we’ll see what happens later this year.

  • avatar

    I know people love to dump on Smart, but I enjoyed driving my Fortwo in the same way I enjoyed driving my old (air-cooled) VW Beetle. I like the styling, the unusual engineering, and the fact that it felt like just the right amount of car for me at the time. I can’t argue that it was a totally rationale purchase, but mostly I liked it.

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