• 2018 Smart

News: Smart Releases Special Edition for 10th Anniversary in the U.S.

Smart Fortwo Electric Marks a Decade

Ten years ago, the Smart car arrived stateside, after a successful run in Europe. To commemorate that milestone, a Special Edition of the Fortwo will premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. It’ll be available for a limited time during the 2018 model year.

2018 Smart

Am I blue?

The Special Edition starts with an exclusive new color—a handsome Sapphire Blue Metallic—that’s sprayed on the plastic body panels, tridion safety cell and grill. The dark monochrome look adds dignity to the 8.8-foot-long car.

Available on the coupe in the Passion and Prime trim lines, the upgrades start with exclusive 10th Anniversary badging. Inside, Brabus supplies a shift knob and floor mats with custom stitching; outside, you get Brabus Monoblock VII wheels in Matte Anthracite Gray along with the Sport package, which includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel and brushed steel pedals with rubber studs.

The Smart Story

Tiny cars are way less relevant or popular in the land of the Interstate Freeway system than along the narrow streets of Europe; volumes have not been huge for the Mercedes-Benz owned brand. Per carsalesbase.com, only 6,211 units were moved in 2016, and about half that in 2017. Smart has opted for an all-electric lineup this year to focus its marketing efforts on a narrower, more sympathetic target audience. (ed. Note: As a former Smart owner, the move to all electric drive only came long after the public presumed the cars were EVs. I can’t tell you the number of times during my three years of ownership that people stopped me to ask—is that electric?)

The special edition features, while attractive, don’t change the car’s 58-mile range, 11.4-second zero-to-sixty sprint, or 81 mph top speed, so this car is very much designed for the city. Appropriately, the only San Francisco Bay Area smart dealer, for example, is in downtown San Francisco.

The special edition adds $1,950 to the little French-built car. That means that you can buy a Passion model with no extra options except for the special edition for $27,790 retail. Subtract the $7,500 Federal tax credit (and $2,500 from the State of California) and you’re looking at an $18,000 EV. At that price, it would be fun to have one around just for the heck of it.

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About Author: Steve Schaefer

Steve Schaefer has written a weekly automotive column for 26 years, testing more than 1,250 cars. Now, he’s focusing on EVs and hybrids. Steve remembers the joy of riding in his father’s Austin-Healey. After discovering the August, 1963 issue of Motor Trend, he became entranced with the annual model change, and began stalking dealers’ back lots to catch the new models as they rolled off the transporter. Coming from a family that owned three Corvairs, Steve was one of the first Saturn buyers, earning him a prominent spot in their 1994 product catalogue. To continue the GM tradition, Steve now has a Chevrolet Bolt EV. Steve is a founding member of the Western Automotive Journalists. Read his EV/hybrid blog at stevegoesgreen.com.

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