New smart electric drive makes city sense - w/video


City cars are a little understood phenomena here in the US. But for folks like me that live in an urban area, city cars can make lots of sense...especially if on-street parking is a problem. But an EV version of a city car takes the whole idea to the next level. I mean are you going to drive a city car cross country? Okay, you could, but would you want to? Most EVs today have enough range to handle just about any sensible daily commute so put these two things together and you get Daimler's smart forto electric drive (I hate the loser case thing they do btw). The newly updated smart forto electric drive (in coupe and cabrio forms) gets a more powerful motor (81 hp) and a larger battery pack that helps the little EV go almost 100 miles between charges. Daimler's battery pack has also been upgraded to allow faster charging (optional) to 80% in 45 minutes. The transmission duties are handled by a single gear drive and the engine spins in the opposite direction for reversing. The smart electric drive will not be the fastest car you'll ever drive but it does scoot around with the best of them. The smart forto electric drive would make a great second or third car, but could handle most of your first car duties (you can rent something larger when you need it btw). The smart forto electric drive is cute although I must say that the screaming lime green paint on the cars shown (yes we know you're a "green" alternative) doesn't do it for me but there are lots of other choices. For lots more info, check out the press releases and LA Auto Show reveal video after the jump. Did I mention that the smart forto electric drive is very affordable? Did I also mention that there are BRABUS performance appearance options?

Source: Smart - Press releases and video after the "read more" jump.

 



Press Release:
The new smart electric drive: 
Perfect drive for the perfect city car
The Hughlights
  • The new smart electric drive combines the unique agility of the smart with local emission-free driving – the ideal combination for urban mobility
  • smart is the only car manufacturer worldwide to offer its model range with both combustion engines and pure battery-electric drive as the smart fortwo, smart fortwo cabrio and smart forfour are available as electric drive models
  • The smart fortwo cabrio is the only electric cabriolet on the market
  • With torque of 160 Newton metres the 60 kW electric car boasts exceedingly agile acceleration
  • The fully charged battery has sufficient power to cover approximately 160 kilometres in accordance with the NEDC, making it ideal for urban use
  • With the high-performance on-board charger the smart electric drive can be charged up to twice as fast as before (depending on the country version and the electric power grid)
  • With the new fast charger (optional extra available from 2017) the car can be charged in less than 45 minutes (from 0 to 80%)
  • The 17.6 kWh lithium-ion battery from the Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUMOTIVE is housed in the vehicle underbody in a safe position that is favourable for the vehicle's centre of gravity
  • The ECO mode is a particularly energy-efficient drive program. The radar-based recuperation controls the energy recovery depending on the traffic situation
  • With the "smart control" app lots of electric drive information can be called up via smartphone, tablet or PC and functions such as pre-entry climate control or intelligent charging can be conveniently controlled remotely
  • In addition to the extensive standard equipment of the model series, the smart electric drive models also come with a dashboard instrument with power meter and battery status display and the Audio & Cool package. The winter package with a heated steering wheel for maximum thermal comfort is available as an exclusive option for the electric drive models
  • The electric drive design package (option) gives the vehicle an expressive look. Among other features the tridion safety cell and door mirror caps are painted in exclusive electric green
  • With eye-catching design details in electric green the special model smart electric drive greenflash is a further exciting highlight for the market launch
  • This is already the fourth generation of electric drive for smart. With the start of the first electrically driven test fleet back in 2007 in London, smart took on a pioneering role in the field of electric mobility
  • Following the world premiere in Paris, the new smart fortwo electric drive will be launched in the USA in early 2017. This will be followed by market launch of the two-seater and four-seater in Europe
  • In Germany prices for the smart fortwo electric drive will start at €21,940 (recommended retail price including 19% VAT). When the environmental bonus is taken into account this means that it will cost less than €18,000
The electric drive: Urban driving fun in the fourth general

The new smart electric drive makes opting into electric mobility more attractive than ever. This is because it combines the agility of the smart with local emission-free driving – the ideal combination for urban mobility. With torque of 160 Newton metres immediately available the 60 kW electric car boasts exceedingly agile acceleration. The fully charged battery has sufficient power to cover approximately 160 kilometres in accordance with the New European Driving Cycle, making it ideal for urban use. With the high-performance on-board charger the smart electric drive can be charged at a household socket up to twice as fast as before – depending on the country version. The ECO mode is a particularly energy-efficient drive program. The radar-based recuperation controls the energy recovery depending on the traffic situation.

A 60 kW (81 hp) electric motor works at the rear of the smart electric drive and transmits its power via a constant ratio to the wheels. Powerful torque of 160 Nm is immediately available from a standstill. The electric drive has a range of approximately 160 km – ideal for local emission-free mobility in urban areas. The maximum speed is electronically limited to 130 km/h to maximise the range.

The electric motor is a separately excited three-phase synchronous motor. With this construction there is an excitation winding on the rotor that is magnetised when current flows. The flow of energy from the high-voltage battery to the electric motor is controlled by the power electronics that are compactly interlocked with the drive unit.

Thanks to the power characteristics of the electric motor, the smart needs just one single fixed gear ratio. There is no need for any gear changing – a major advantage in dense city traffic. To reverse, the engine's direction of rotation changes. The drive is produced in Renault's plant in Clèon, Northern France.

With battery certificate: lithium-ion battery from the Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUMOTIVE

The smart is equipped with a lithium-ion battery from the Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUMOTIVE. The company based in Kamenz, Saxony, has been building the electric heart of the smart electric drive since 2012 (see the corresponding section for details).

The battery has capacity of 17.6 kWh and is cleverly housed in the vehicle underbody between the two axles in a safe position that is favourable for the vehicle's centre of gravity. The battery consists of 96 flat cells and the cell chemistry has been improved compared with the predecessor battery.

To strengthen customers' trust in the innovative drive technology, smart is issuing a battery certificate and therefore a service commitment for the high-voltage battery for the first time. This guarantees that the maximum energy content is not less than the specified battery capacity – over eight years and/or to a mileage of 100,000 kilometres.

Made-to-measure power output: on-board charger, fast charger, wallbox
All smart electric drives have a powerful on-board charger as a standard feature. This enables an empty battery to be quickly charged. In the USA and the UK the charging time is 2.5 hours – half as long as for the predecessor. With the "smart control" app the charging process can be conveniently monitored from afar and functions such as intelligent charging can be controlled.

From the autumn of 2017 a particularly powerful 22 kW fast charger will be available as an option in Europe. This enables the smart electric drive to be charged much more quickly: in less than 45 minutes if local conditions allow three-phase charging.

Furthermore, smart offers a wallbox as special equipment. This enables the vehicle to be charged with a higher charging capacity. The wallbox must be installed by a qualified electrician and correctly connected to the mains supply.

With observation of the environment: radar-based recuperation
As well as the basic drive program the smart electric drive driver can select the ECO mode. This is designed for a particularly efficient driving style. In addition, the maximum speed is limited, the accelerator pedal curve adjusted and the maximum recuperation level is pre-selected. Furthermore, the air conditioning control adjusts the outlet air temperature from the air vents to reduce the energy consumption.

The driver can deactivate the ECO program with the kickdown function if necessary, for example for an overtaking manoeuvre. Pushing the accelerator pedal right down activates a temporary boost. This enables maximum acceleration with defined maximum battery power if the current charge level and the temperature of the battery allow this function.

In overrun mode or when braking the vehicle's kinetic energy is converted into electrical energy – this is called recuperation. The electric motor then operates as a generator and generates braking torque on the wheels. The electrical energy generated flows back to the battery. The level of energy recuperation possible depends on the battery condition (charge level and temperature).

In Western Europe the smart electric drive models have anticipatory radar-based recuperation that is active in the basic drive program. The traffic situation is monitored with a radar sensor and a recuperation level that suits the current situation is selected. The electronically controlled recuperation takes place in five levels as soon as the driver takes their foot off the accelerator pedal (overrun mode). If the road is clear coasting is activated.

In the ECO drive program the highest recuperation level is automatically set.

To save energy and further extend the range, the smart electric drive also features pre-entry climate control – see corresponding section.

Equipment and features: Maximum scope for individualisation
The smart electric drive models surpass the extensive standard equipment of their siblings with conventional drive as they additionally have a dashboard instrument with power meter and battery status display (standard) or the winter package with heated steering wheel for maximum climate comfort (optionally available). The electric drive design package (optionally available) gives the vehicle an expressive look with tridion safety cell and door mirror caps painted in exclusive electric green. And every wish can be catered for when it comes to colours and optional equipment as the smart BRABUS tailor made individualisation programme is also available for the smart fortwo electric drive. Electric driving at smart therefore offers maximum scope for customisation.

Like all models of the current smart generation the electric drive versions come with extensive safety and comfort equipment. The standard equipment includes power steering, LED daytime driving lights, central locking with radio remote control, visual locking-verification signal and immobiliser, cruise control with limiter (variable speed limitation), exterior temperature indicator with frost warning (not in USA/Canada), instrument cluster with monochrome LCD display and trip computer, and electric windows. The Cool & Audio package with smart Audio-System with AUX/USB Bluetooth® interface and automatic climate control is also on board as a standard feature.

In addition the smart electric drive models have several special features such as the dashboard instrument with power meter and state of charge. It is next to the A-pillar trim on the dashboard. The electric power recuperated is displayed on the left side of the power meter and the electric power currently called up is shown on the right side. LEDs between the segments show the available power and power that can be called up. The battery charge status is displayed in the lower part of the dashboard instrument.

The standard equipment also includes an instrument cluster with a monochrome display in LCD technology where the functions charge level and total eco score that are specific to the electric drive can be shown.

A colour 8.9 cm display in TFT technology (Thin-Film Transistor) with a trip computer is available as special equipment. These are the additional functions
  • Display of radar-based recuperation combined with the ECO button (in Western Europe only)
  • Extended display of the charging rate
  • Display of the battery charge level with animated battery icon
  • Detailed specific eco score for the electric vehicle
  • Histogram including recuperated energy
  • Energy flow display including auxiliary consumers with digital values
  • Setting and display of pre-entry climate control and smart charging in conjunction with entering a departure time.
Electric drive customers who opt for the smart Media-System with a 7‑inch colour display and touchscreen operation can also look forward to several additional functions:
  • The current range can be considered in the selection of navigation destinations
  • Charging stations can be added as intermediate destinations
  • Navigation to the nearest charging station with the first battery reserve warning
  • Charging station search based on POIs on the SD card
  • Graphic representation of the range on the navi map.
A standard feature on board all smart electric drive models is a rigid cable bag that is open at the back. The cable bag is accommodated in the luggage compartment on the right-hand side in the direction of travel. It is fastened in the luggage compartment with two quick-release fasteners, a retaining strap and Velcro strips and can be removed if necessary. The surface is made of stain-resistant material.

These two packages reserved for the smart electric drive models offer a striking design and even more utility value:
  • electric drive design package: the tridion safety cell in the exclusive colour electric green can be combined with black or white bodypanels and radiator trim. The door mirror caps are also painted in electric green. 16-inch wheels in black or white, "electric drive" lettering and corresponding logos round off the look.
  • Winter package: in addition to the heated steering wheel and the heated seats (also at the rear for the forfour), the expanded insulation of doors and cockpit ensure a comfortable warm temperature, even in icy outside temperatures. These features can also be activated by smartphone as part of the pre-entry climate control (see corresponding section). The package is available in combination with the lines.
All three lines: lots of opportunities for differentiation in the interior

passion, prime and proxy are the names of the three lines which provide for visual differentiation, as with the combustion engine models. The most important features at a glance:
  • The passion line has a very stylish and modern interior with a choice of colour combinations in black/orange or black/white. The multifunctional steering wheel in leather, the instrument cluster with a 3.5-inch colour display and the Direct-Steer system combine a high-quality ambience with functionality
  • The elegant tone-in-tone look in black/grey and seats and multifunction steering wheel in leather give the interior of the prime line an elegant and classic appearance. Standard equipment includes electric power steering, heated seats for driver and passenger and Lane Keeping Assist.
  • The proxy line defines itself as an innovative trendsetter. Highlights are the panoramic roof and the seats in leather look and white/blue fabric. The Sleek Style package with 16-inch alloy wheels stands for dynamism.
smart BRABUS tailor made: a fully customised smart fortwo electric drive
The extensive smart BRABUS tailor made individualisation programme is also available for the smart fortwo electric drive. With paint finishes in numerous different colours, leather in various basic colours and the sporty tailor made exterior style package, creative customers can configure a smart fortwo in line with their own personal ideas.

A number of attractive tailor made packages facilitates the search for that special style. The leather appointments in the tailor made leather package (available in Western Europe) are unique in the small car segment and comprise customised leather on the seats, dashboard and door centre panels with an individually chosen seam line. By contrast, in the interior colour package the trims around the instrument cluster, dashboard instrument and radio/navigation system and the rings of the air vents and accent trim parts on the dashboard are painted in a colour of the customer's choice. The interior style package rounds off the exclusive design of the interior with a BRABUS shift lever knob, BRABUS hand-brake lever, BRABUS door sills and BRABUS sports pedals.

The tailor made exterior style package gives the exterior of the smart fortwo a sporty, individual look. Among other features it includes a BRABUS front spoiler, side skirts, a roof spoiler and a BRABUS rear diffuser.