Yes, we’ve had a few of these before, but there’s just something irresistible about them. Especially since the Smarts always end up looking bigger than one might expect them to. Sent in by ds23pallas.
Fuel efficiency, part one.
LOVE that caption on the trailer!
Fuel efficiency, part two.
I am not sure what kind of gas mileage the engines in the Euro Smart cars get but in the USA, these cars are mercilessly raked over hot coals due to having horrible gas mileage in comparison to its size. Plus it requires Premium gas to get 34mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway. By contrast the 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage which is mocked all over gets 37mpg in the city and 44 mpg on the highway and is bigger and cheaper then the Smart.
Combined: 47 mpg for the gasoline and 78 mpg for the diesel Smarts. The average of the Smart models available on the Dutch market.
Real life numbers, source:
The numbers are L/100 km. So I did run a conversion-tool to get to mpg US.
Edit: second try, that’s 43 US mpg combined for the gasoline Smarts and 59 US mpg combined for the diesel Smarts.
I’ve noticed many European cars seem to require Premium. With a price difference in Australia of around 16 cents per litre between standard (91 octane) and premium (96), this must surely hurt European car sales.
How come “your” petrol is so much better than “ours”, Johannes? Any ideas?
Pete, basically all gasoline cars here use “regular” fuel. That’s RON95 octane rating and it contains max. 5% ethanol. It’s called Euro 95 at the gas stations. Regular fuel in other Euro-countries often contains more bio-ethanol. I remember they introduced it in Germany a few years ago. It was a disaster, the Germans refused to fill up their cars with it and more or less demanded the “old-school” regular gas back.
Premium fuel is RON97 (like Shell V-Power), RON98 (like BP Ultimate) and “ze Germans” even have RON100 and 102 at their gas stations. These premium fuels are ethanol-free. That’s why owners of classic cars, like me, often use these premium fuels. Or owners of Porsches and other high-performance cars.
Diesel has to meet the EN590 norm: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EN_590
Very important, wrong or bad diesel will screw today’s high-tech diesels.
I wish we had easy availability of ethanol-free gas here in this country. I’d certainly pay more for it. But no, E10 is pretty much mandatory in urban areas here. You have to go out into the country to get ethanol-free.
An example, from top to bottom: diesel, euro (as in Euro 95), autogas (as in LPG) and BP Ultimate. (their premium RON98 gasoline) Price is in eurocents per liter. Not today’s prices, it’s cheaper now.
I averaged 42mpg in mine for the four years I had it. The Mirage does do a little better, though the new smart may beat it depending on the engine tune.
One of the drivers where I’m working has a Smart for two he says he gets about 650kms from a 30L tank of gas, I get roughly 350 kms from the same size tank in my Hillman so some progress in the last 60 years.
We all know how “lower-longer-wider” ended up, but I find it hard to resist that Cadi’s proportions. It gives me fever like Peggy Lee.
Where in Europe was this photo produced?
American cars in Europe often seem to look different – and wrong – to me.
I can not imagine any American owner of this Cadillac convertible (1) having the top down but the side windows up nor (2) running blackwall, not whitewall, tires.
Considering that the Smart car appears to have Car2Go markings (a rental scheme), this picture is probably somewhere in the US.
It cannot be in the US, there is a pay phone behind the Caddy, when is the last time you saw one of those? A pay phone in the USA is more scarcer then a running Subaru 360
The pay phone looks more like an electronic parking meter to me.
As an aside, there still are pay phones sprinkled around here in Chicago (and you couldn’t pay me to touch one)…
NOT the Smart.
The Cadillac might be impractical but its fun to drive quotient would be off the charts compared to the smart. My neighbor used to have a smart as a company car and he hated every minute of it; for one thing, here in the great Midwest, a high percentage of the other drivers are piloting huge SUV’s or even huger pick up trucks. Either one of those could run over a smart and not even be aware of it. There might be some car on the market today that appeals to me less than the smart, but I can’t think of what it would be.
They could tow the Smart with the Caddy and use it as a runabout dinghy!!
The last time my wife used a pay phone it cost more than cell phone service. We both got cell phones shortly after.
It reminds me this picture I made of my ’75 Electra and a friend’s 2006 Smart Diesel a few years ago when the Smart was new… The Smart had an engine failure a few years ago and my friend sold it. These engines aren’t made to last forever! This one was done before 180,000 kms. It did have a good fuel economy but a lot of reliability issues (A/C, turbo/intercooler problems, rattles, water leaks…
I remember being a passenger in this car and we stalled on an highway exit. The engine was still running but the car wouldn’t move as the transmission stayed in neutral! My friend turned the ignition off and had to wait until something cooled down and an error code disappeared on the instrument panel to restart the car. That was not the best place to have such a problem but he was used to!
The transmission was OK (for that day!) after the engine was restarted but a few months after, the engine started to knock and that was the end!
Stalling on a highway exit – engine control software by Microsoft?
The minnow and the whale.
Too easy. The one on the right is the right one.
Such a difference in style and design ideals over fifty – or is it sixty? – years.
The Caddy, though huge, is designed to look elegant. And it does. Everything belongs together. Every line leads somewhere. Every detail adds to the overall effect. Nothing looks out of place, or awkward.
By contrast, the Smart looks like someone threw up on the drawing board.
While I applaud the concept…..
The Cadillac ia a rare special appearance by the Fleetwood model. The chrome outline on the side was unique. These were rare in the 1960’s, let alone next to any Smart car.
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