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Smart ForFour Brabus to get big power boost

Smart's hot four-door city car is on the way with 50 per cent more power, and our snappers have captured it with minimal disguise

We've previously seen a Brabus-tuned version of the dinky ForTwo undergoing testing, and now the larger ForFour looks to be getting some upgrades, too. We're expecting both to make their debut at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show and hit showrooms at the end of 2015.

Tell-tale signs that this is no ordinary Smart include the disguised front bumper, which is deeper and features a new air intake design. Bigger and wider wheels hint at the extra grip and braking power required, while a meaner rear bumper design hides new twin exhaust tailpipes. While the tweaks are more subtle than you'd expect, under the bonnet there should be a significant power boost.

We predict Brabus, the tuning firm that focuses on Mercedes and Smart models, will upgrade the existing turbocharged 0.9-litre TCe petrol engine, as it has in previous hot Smarts. That should mean power increases from the current car's 89bhp to at least 110bhp, if not more.

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Good news for enthusiasts is that a manual gearbox is now available, and is expected to be offered in the Brabus versions. A seven-speed dual-clutch autobox should also be offered, like it is in the standard car, which is a Mercedes-sourced transmission rather than the clunky five-speed unit in the old car.

We're expecting firmer suspension to ensure the ForFour can handle the extra poke, although as it'll land in the less powerful end of the hot hatch spectrum we won't see big changes. The ForTwo Brabus is likely to kick off from just over £15,000, while the four-door ForFour will only add around £500 to that.

See more from the Frankfurt Motor Show 2015 here.

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