Smart Roadster revealed

19 Jul, 2011 5:16pm Ben Foulds

Our exclusive images show look of reborn two-seater, plus chunky new off-road model

A Smart revolution is on the way. We can exclusively reveal that a replacement for the Smart Roadster is set to hit showrooms next year, followed closely by a new 4x4.

An Auto Express reader and Smart customer got in touch after a visit to his local dealer, who confided he’d been informed of plans to produce a successor to the roadster during a trip to the Smart factory. Not only that, a factory worker also let slip that a 4x4 competitor to the MINI Countryman is in the pipeline. Our pictures show how the models could look when they reach production.

The Roadster takes inspiration from the ForSpeed concept revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in March, and stays true to the 2003 original with its distinctive low stance, while featuring modern design touches such as sculpted flanks and intricate detailing. The chunkier five-door 4x4 harks back to the ForFour supermini that was axed in 2006. It retains Smart’s trademark two-tone body, highlighting the central safety cell, and will be the firm’s largest model yet.

The 4x4 is likely to be based on Mercedes’ new B-Class platform, but underpinnings for the Roadster have yet to be confirmed. However, the recent tie-up between Smart parent firm Daimler and the Renault-Nissan alliance has already heralded a joint rear-drive platform to be shared between the next ForTwo and Renault Twingo. This could feasibly serve the Roadster, too.

It’s not the first time that the Smart Roadster has been pencilled in for a comeback. Back in 2006, an industry group called Project Kimber planned to sell revised versions of the car using the AC Ace badge. Production was slated for 2007, but the operation was quietly dropped before a prototype had even taken to the road.

New versions of the ForTwo and ForFour are scheduled to land in showrooms in 2014.

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looks like an sls

The front of the car looks like a 'smiley face'...not very macho. But then if you want a Smart car...that's what you get..(lol).

So. A 2-seater sports, a 5-door hatch and... a Baby Buggy?

Lets hope if they do bring a new one out soon, that its not rushed out. The last version of this car used to leak at every seal. Several of my friends went through many 'Leak fixes' but the problem never really went away...

A new off-road Smart. Question is.... how far off-road? This will be like all the other mooted Smart models which just might appear sometime, although I'll not hold my breath. If the dates quoted are correct, that's three more years of the present ForTwo. I've thought about a ForTwo CDI, [in fact I've given it a great deal of thought] but was put off by the fact that a new model was on the horizon. Turns out it's further off than I'd imagined, so the present model may be worth buying. The ForFour model does look like the old one with a few tweaks as does, to my mind, the roadster. Still a few more models would make Smart showrooms look as if there's a choice for customers, apart from colour combinations.

Is it too early to begin marketing a retro smart?

The folks at Mercedes seem to think so.

The forFour was struck off because it was too expensive. little has changed in the motoring world so the new off-tarmac version won't be priced to match a Hyundai i20 it will be tilting at the Mini Countryman. The only off-road action either will see is bouncing up and down a kerb at Lidls.

The original roadster was ham-strung by the gearbox and as the motivation will no doubt come from the forTwo then it will remain hamstrung. Unless the forTwo is going to get a manual box option and that piece of this particular jig-saw will have to remain an unknown.

The open topper is a hark back to the cross-blade but less radical and far more conservative.

There is nothing in this latest 'teaser' that is new, or an advance. Motorists of Europe prepare to be royally fleeced by the three pointed star that at least will remain pretty much the same as now.

Does any1 think it looks like that MINI roadster nonsense that coming?

They seem to have given the front of their new cars a look not dissimilar to a camp rodent. Shut that door!

Well Townsman, your comments on the future smart models are probably the most accurate.

Daimler AG 's new range of smart car models will probably be much different from the ones shown in this teaser.

The most reliable predictions concerning the smart brand's plans have so far come from the German and French motoring press so let's wait and see what they come up with in the next two years.

Autocar Magazine for example have so far been totally off the mark with their predictions when it comes to the new generation smart forfour.

Why did anyone think that just because the styling on their ForSpeed looks good on a cute city car, that it would also look good on a more sporty car. That's like BMW trying to make a butch 5 door SUV with Mini styling...oh wait

Well, that "exclusive" turned out to be another made up crock of crap.

AEX 1334
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