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Thread: Smart Cars

  1. #1

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    Default Smart Cars

    http://www.smartusa.com/index.html

    I was at lunch today with the bosses and the topic of these Smart Cars from Mercedes came up. My boss (Too much money to know what to do with) is going to buy one in 2008, and has been talking to the makers and all that jazz... he said they will get an average of 70mpg. I was just floored... very exotic yet sporty looking, and I'm intrigued now.

    For the basic model, just under 12K new, unheard of for that kind of gas mileage. The one most would be interested in, under 14K.

    Anyone else heard much about these? The USA will be able to buy them the end of 2008 beginning of 2009 is what my boss said. I guess he has his name already on one, but the backorder list is HUGE!

    Not your typical car look, (8ft long?!? WOW) and only able to hold two people, but for a single person commuting, it's better then a motorcycle. (Apparently the first model was actually two motorcycle engines that pushed it...)

    Could be a new wave of vehicles hitting the market... Hope you don't mind short and squat :D
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    These have been out in europe for a long time, the US make is actually larger than the EU version to pass the saftey requirements in the US. I'm not aware of any model getting anywhere close to 70 mpg. They are mid to low 40 mpg for gas and 60 mpg for deisel as far as I can tell.

    They aren't all that bad but I was surprised how poor the gas miliage was for as small as the thing is.

    I'd rather save a couple thousand dollars and get the larger Yaris and only lose 3 mpg.
    Last edited by jdhdiggs; 06-27-2007 at 04:01 PM.
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    There is a big ruckus in England right now because the SmartCars don't seem to fair too terribly well in a crash of any kind. Most journalists are likening them to rolling coffins.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jstas View Post
    There is a big ruckus in England right now because the SmartCars don't seem to fair too terribly well in a crash of any kind. Most journalists are likening them to rolling coffins.
    This is the wrong car for the Long Island Expressway, unless you put in a full cage. :D
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    It's really just a gas-powered golf cart. If you have to go over 30MPH I wouldn't dare drive one.
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    It's actually achieving some great safety reviews, from their website... but whatever. No less safe then a Mini Cooper or anything like that I imagine.

    I'll be curious to see the final specs on it of course for the USA. Plus, no need to worry about parallel parking... just pull in frong first... haha
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    A Mini Cooper is a full 50% longer than this thing. Maybe you have to see one in person to understand just how ridiculously small they are.
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    Hmm, just thinking out-loud here, but why does a shorter span make something less safe? Take a piece of steel from a house... the longer the span it runs for your basement, the more support beams you need... so logically, wouldn't an 8ft long steel beam be stronger then a 12ft long steel beam?

    I don't see how just because something is smaller, makes is automatically more dangerous. That reasoning just doesn't make sense to me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrNightly View Post
    Hmm, just thinking out-loud here, but why does a shorter span make something less safe? Take a piece of steel from a house... the longer the span it runs for your basement, the more support beams you need... so logically, wouldn't an 8ft long steel beam be stronger then a 12ft long steel beam?

    I don't see how just because something is smaller, makes is automatically more dangerous. That reasoning just doesn't make sense to me.
    It may not, it may be a misconception on my part, I certainly have no data to back up my feelings on the matter. It's all just.... a feeling. They don't LOOK stable or safe. They're almost as tall as they are long, it looks like a stiff breeze would take the thing out, let alone some soccer mom on a cell phone smacking her kids.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobman1235 View Post
    It may not, it may be a misconception on my part, I certainly have no data to back up my feelings on the matter. It's all just.... a feeling. They don't LOOK stable or safe. They're almost as tall as they are long, it looks like a stiff breeze would take the thing out, let alone some soccer mom on a cell phone smacking her kids.
    Yah, I have no personal experience with this either... it just seems that a lot of people think that small is automatically unsafe. I know the Jetta received the highest possible crash testing in it's class for side impart crashes, and while that is a much bigger car than this Smart Car, it still isn't huge.

    I'm just curious why you thought the way you did. Thanks for explaining! :D
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    PLUS, if you ever see the Woody Allen movie "Scoop", he dies in a SmartCar, and blames it for his death. :)
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

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    They're everywhere in Canada. I had no idea you guys didn't have them yet. I'd actually really like to test drive one just to see how such a small car handles.

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    I'd need a Lexan windshield since there is no hood.

    Deer have a habit of running into my Suburban for a means of suicide.

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    How about a cow catcher instead?

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    I dont know about them. Its looks like a great city car and nothing else. I would be afraid to take it on the highway. Who knows we shall see when it comes out. For now I love my Yaris.

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    I have seen these in Europe for many years. In Holland, they are driven by executives and considered a normal car. The funny thing is that the Smart not nealy the smallest car I have seen there, there are some much smaller and park on the sidewalks.

    I cannot see them being a hit here, at least in a general area. I can see them as very good in major cities with traffic and parking problems, perhaps even as a trendy "green" vehicle that some will support or a fad like the Segways were, but they are just too small for the highways here.

    I have seen 2 Smarts in S. FL recently, one was on the interstate in the left lane and passed me. I hope they do not have to make any sudden turns as the wheels are very small and I can see a rollover in the making.
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    I've seen one in person and it's enough to scare the **** out of you when you're passing it, let alone riding in the thing. They are very small and if you blip you'd think you passed the equivalent of a Vespa on the freeway. I would be nervous being inside them with how some people drive, but whatever..

    I saw a news report on them several months ago and they ran it full bore into a solid wall obstacle at 40mph and it had zero cabin cave-in. I could be wrong, but I think there was a company employee even actually driving the thing in that crash test.
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    Quote Originally Posted by brettw22 View Post
    I've seen one in person and it's enough to scare the **** out of you when you're passing it, let alone riding in the thing. They are very small and if you blip you'd think you passed the equivalent of a Vespa on the freeway. I would be nervous being inside them with how some people drive, but whatever..

    I saw a news report on them several months ago and they ran it full bore into a solid wall obstacle at 40mph and it had zero cabin cave-in. I could be wrong, but I think there was a company employee even actually driving the thing in that crash test.
    There's a YouTube video (too late for me to search right now) of one of those British car shows crashing a Mini into a concrete barrier at 70MPH (remotely), and the passenger cage was intact. So they can obviously withstand an impact. Still makes me nervous.
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    I've never been in a car that was better than my motorcycle.

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    I didn't think they'd catch on here much either, but I've been seeing a lot of them. Now that there is actually a used market for these, I can seem the getting a lot more popular. I'll try and get a photo of one next to a normal sized car tomorrow.

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    Here in Texas, most folks own a truck or suv. Compound that fact with another fact: we can't drive in wet or snowy weather (we don't slow down).

    You'll be dead. Forget the Jaws of Life. Just dig a hole and push you and the car into it.

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    The safety issue: Yeah, it's great that you won't be crushed but unless you'r wearing a 5 point harness, your going to snap in two. Larger cars are typically safer because they can use their mass/size to absorb the impact forces over a longer period of time minimizing your wiplash forces.

    Also, I think the US versions are at least a foot, if not 2 feet longer than the Euro ones. They're too long to parallel park by pulling in perpidicular to the street now. I really don't see these things working outside of SF, LA, and NYC.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhdiggs View Post
    The safety issue: Yeah, it's great that you won't be crushed but unless you'r wearing a 5 point harness, your going to snap in two. Larger cars are typically safer because they can use their mass/size to absorb the impact forces over a longer period of time minimizing your wiplash forces.

    Also, I think the US versions are at least a foot, if not 2 feet longer than the Euro ones. They're too long to parallel park by pulling in perpidicular to the street now. I really don't see these things working outside of SF, LA, and NYC.
    Or maybe something I could use to go down to the mail box, the golf cart doesn't have all the amenities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by read-alot View Post
    Or maybe something I could use to go down to the mail box, the golf cart doesn't have all the amenities.
    Yup, too bad you can't add a tow mower and have an airconditioned golf cart and mower! ;)

    That being said, my wife wants on in the worst way. :(
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    It would be a cool escape pod for my SUV :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhdiggs View Post
    The safety issue: Yeah, it's great that you won't be crushed but unless you'r wearing a 5 point harness, your going to snap in two. Larger cars are typically safer because they can use their mass/size to absorb the impact forces over a longer period of time minimizing your wiplash forces.
    A 5 point would be worse for whiplash. They have less give and would hold your body in place better, causing your head to whip around even more. The only solution would be a 5 or 6 point harness, a helmet, and a HANS setup. :D Just as I mentioned above, may as well install a cage in it too.
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    What a bunch of pansies around this joint...















































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    Can you imagine doing donuts in the snow with one? Assuming you're careful enough to not roll the thing, it'd be so fun. Commuter car? Pfftt, how about street legal go-cart.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhdiggs View Post
    The safety issue: Yeah, it's great that you won't be crushed but unless you'r wearing a 5 point harness, your going to snap in two. Larger cars are typically safer because they can use their mass/size to absorb the impact forces over a longer period of time minimizing your wiplash forces.

    ding ding ding.

    lack of invasion into the passenger cabin is a good thing, but if it aint absorbing impact, your body is. and thats gonna wreck your sh*t
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