Smart Car

I want a Smart Car. My husband says I’m a fool! What do you think?

Unfortunately, I agree with your husband.
Unless your only criterion is being able to park in even the smallest space, the so-called Smart car has no advantages whatsoever.

Between this car’s need for premium gas, the reality that larger and more comfortable cars get equivalent or better gas mileage, its poor reliability, and the fact that the transmission is…just plain awful, I can’t figure out why anybody would want a Smart car when better alternatives exist.

I strongly suggest that you buy a copy of the Consumer Reports New Car Buyers Guide, which is available at Barnes & Noble and some other retailers that have a very large magazine selection. This publication will inform you about everything you need to know when comparing the car models sold in the US.

You might also not consider the Scion IQ

Same here. For the price there are many more versitile cars that don’t use premium that don’t have a bad-shifing transmission that carry more that get better mpgs. Other than that, what’s not to like?

The only value is its small size, ant that only matters for parking. It is also a detriment in a crash.

My vote is with your husband and these cars lost their luster pretty quickly. Sales tanked on them after the initial novelty wore off.

The Smart was road tested in OK over several days back (by Motor Trend I think it was) before they were even put on the market and the review by the 2 guys who tested it were not terribly kind to put it mildly. Average MPG even on open flat roadways, no room to speak of, controls hard to deal with, and the biggest gripe of all was the perpetually shifting transmission.

lets see how the Fiat 500 does.


Why do you want a smart car, and which one? Combined EPA mileage is 36 MPG, but it is premium. Any car that uses regular will have equal or lower fuel costs if it gets 33 MPG combined. You can get seating for 4 and much better reliability if you look at Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, Fiat 500, Nissan Versa, Toyota Yaris, Chevy Sonic, and Ford Fiesta. fortwo’s reliability is so bad that it pulls Mercedes Benz reliability down, and is worse than any other car in the small car category. If you like it because it’s cute and that’s all that matters, then buy it. But if there is anything else, like comfort, reliability, and the ability to take more than one passenger. look elsewhere.

jtsanders said it well. It’s a cute car to some, but it’s substandard in lots of other areas.

By the way, although we’re assuming that you think the car is cute, a lot of people don’t share that opinion. Your husband may be one of them. I’d actually feel pretty self-conscious if I ever had to drive one for any reason, to be honest.

I agree with your husband. The “cute” will wear off of this car very quickly.

If you want to see a good use of a Smart, look at this trailer for The Expendibles 2:

Looking for about 30 seconds online, prices for these seem to go from mid 12 kilobucks to the mid 17s. I honestly can’t imagine why anyone would want one of these. My Nissan Versa has the low price range and it functions as a real car that can seat me, my wife, and my three kids in reasonable comfort, plus a fair-sized trunk for luggage. The Versa also weighs about 2,700 lbs, nearly a thousand lbs. more than the smart, and gets at least comparable gas mileage on regular gas! I’m not into the “bigger-and-heavier-equals-safer” theory, but I wouldn’t want to drive a car that weighs 1,800 lbs. That thing would get punted in an accident!

The Smart Car get pretty poor mpg for such a small car. You can get similar mpg numbers from a Honda Civic, and get much more room and safety.

Not unless it is destined to receive a Hayabusa engine.

If they made them any smaller they’d have to rename the SMRT since they wouldn’t have enough room for the extra letter

Be a good car for a gated community,dont believe I would want it on the freeway-Kevin

History repeats itself. I remember well the Isetta that was imported in the late 1950s. It ws about the size of the Smart car. The country was in a recession and the Isetta didn’t cost much, but it didn’t catch on and was gone in a couple of years. I predict the same demise of the Smart car.

If Triedaq"s prediction is right, and I suspect it is, and you are young, 40 years away from retirement, then maybe you should get one. After you get sick of it, park it in a garage or barn, keep it covered, take it out for a short spin, about 20 miles every month and change the oil every 2 years, and when you retire, sell it to fund your retirement. Are those old Isetta’s worth anything?

@keith–I don’t think a used Isetta from the 1950s is worth very much today, even in pristine condition. One car collector that I know said that his rule is to find out what teen agers 30 to 40 years ago thought were hot cars. These teenagers are now in their mid 40s to late 50s and have the money to buy the cars they dreamed about owning in their youth. Many of us geezers who are in our late 60s and early 70s, have lost our desire to have the dream cars of our youth. The Isetta certainly wasn’t a dream car from my teen-age years and I doubt that the Smart car is a dream car of today’s teenagers. About five years ago, a friend of mine wanted to sell me his 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air hard top with the original 283 V-8 and the three speed manual column shift transmission. In my teen age years, this would have been my dream car. After a drive in the Chevrolet, my thought was "Why would I want this?"
I think that the OP would do better to invest the money in a CD rather than buy the Smart car for an investment.

Unless your only criterion is being able to park in even the smallest space, the so-called Smart car has no advantages whatsoever.
I respectfully disagree. A motorcycle can outdo a Smart Car in parking finesse.

I am gong to go against the grain a little. This probably comes as no surprise to some.

Before I condemn the Smart Car, I would like to know more about your car needs and what you plan to do with the car.

How often do you plan to drive the car? Where to you plan to drive the car? How many passengers do you plan to haul in the next 6 years? Do you have any plan to expand your family?

Having looked at hybrids and considering the high price of battery replacement, I’ve been looking for small economy cars that get good fuel economy without being hybrids. I am not looking for a new car, but I am just curious to see what’s out there. What I’ve found is that most of the small fuel efficient nonhybrid cars coming from the major manufacturers have stiff suspensions and low profile tires. They are fuel efficient cars, but they aren’t really so economical and they don’t seem to be designed for middle age and elderly customers.

If I was the kind of person who was just looking for something I could use on weekends for leisure, and not day to day commuting, or maybe if I was a stay at home mom and only used it for occasional errands at short distances, and was looking for the cheapest alternative, I would consider a Smart Car.

If the OP has access to mass transit, and just wants a grocery getter that’s easy to find a parking space for, maybe the Smart Car might be a good idea.