When I took over the running of the Smart in August, it had a clear bill of health - so I could start my assessment with a clean sheet. Unfortunately, its behaviour hasn't been perfect. A manufacturing problem meant no oil filters were available at the first service. Eventually it was carried out - more than a month late. Disappointing...
Styling-wise, though, the Smart has been a hit. And it's as distinctive inside as out, with high-quality Mercedes switchgear and comfortable seats. My only complaint is that the twin glass sunroofs and large windows can leave you feeling exposed in the cabin. On the move, the Smart is a pleasant drive... until the traffic grinds to a halt. From a standstill, the two-pedal manual box pulls too hard against the brakes, lurching the car forward.
Out of town, it comes into its own, with sharp steering and tidy body control making light work of twisty B-roads. Excellent economy also means that the ForFour has done more than its fair share of motorway miles, with many colleagues putting up with the shaky ride quality to save on fuel bills.
So, as the Smart heads back to its maker, it's with some disappointment that we hand back the keys. Overall grade? A thoroughly respectable C+.