(from smart press
release) smart at the Geneva Motor Show 2011: proving that
electric mobility can be fun: smart forspeed: zero emissions, great
fun to drive and a cool design
Stuttgart – smart is presenting an unconventional study at the
Geneva Motor Show: the forspeed combines contemporary urban mobility
with the fun factor typical of smart. The two-seater has no roof or
side windows and it features a low wind deflector instead of a
windscreen in the style of a classic propeller aircraft. The result
is an incomparable fresh air driving experience. The responsive
electric drive that has been further developed and features a boost
function also guarantees driving pleasure. A look forward at the
next generation is particularly exciting as the era of electric
mobility has already started at smart.
No roof, minimal windows
and a responsive and zero-emission electric drive at the rear: the
smart forspeed combines responsibility and emotional appeal in a new
and pleasurable way. Dr. Annette Winkler, Head of smart says "The
smart forspeed is a completely new take on how much fun it is to
drive electric: it boasts a superb design with a powerful drive
system and, needless to say, locally emission-free. And if you put
the smart forspeed next to our ebike, escooter and smart fortwo
electric drive you'll see that smart has realised all kinds of
variations of electric driving - demonstrating that smart is not
just a practical city car, but a great idea." The smart forspeed
boasts an extremely innovative and self-assured design. Prof. Dr. h.
c. Gorden Wagener, Head of Design says "The cult brand smart has
always taken an unconventional approach with bold design. The
forspeed now carries purist sportiness to extremes and in terms of
form it is also a pioneer for a new paradigm of mobility."
Powerful and environmentally
friendly electric drive with an extra boost
smart is a pioneer in
modern electric mobility. The second generation smart fortwo
electric drive has been delivered to customers since the end of
2009. It is been proving its suitability for everyday use in 18
countries including Germany, Italy, Spain, England, France,
Switzerland, the USA, Canada and further countries in Asia. Due to
the high demand production figures have been increased to 1500
vehicles. Thanks to this experience smart has already collected
extensive customer feedback that has been integrated in the
development of the smart forspeed's electric drive. With its
improved performance and charge management the concept vehicle
offers a look at the performance potential of future generations of
the electric smart.
For example, the smart
forspeed accelerates from 0 to 60 km/h in just 5.5 seconds and
reaches a top speed of 120 km/h. A 30 kW magneto-electric motor is
installed at the rear of the smart forspeed and the vehicle concept
provides an immediate powerful response from stationary. Pressing a
button in the centre console activates a boost function which
provides an extra 5 kW of power for a short time and is ideal for
overtaking manoeuvres on urban highways, for example. The smart
forspeed is powered by a lithium-ion battery that delivers 16.5 kWh
of electrical energy. It is simple to charge at any conventional 220
Volt socket. The charging device is located in the third brake light
behind the smart logo and features a simple push/push opening
mechanism. A fully charged battery is sufficient for 135 kilometres
of driving fun (NEDC). Quick charging from 0 to 80 percent takes
just 45 minutes.
The forspeed developers have integrated a further clever way of
charging in the wind deflector: photovoltaic cells feed solar power
to the on-board electrical system. As with the smart escooter this
lengthens the battery life of the smartphone, for example.
With its high-gloss
white metallic paintwork the smart forspeed also builds a bridge to
the two-wheel escooter and ebike studies that were presented at the
Paris Motor Show.
The front and rear lamps
have a very striking design. The outer rings are illuminated by a
large number of rod-shaped LEDs whilst the centre of the lamps is
white. The indicators seem to push outwards like arrows – like drops
on the cockpit window of an aeroplane as it takes off. In the front
and rear bumpers numerous holes with a honeycomb structure serve as
air inlets and create an interesting progressive pattern. At the
same time this pattern gives the forspeed a particularly wide
appearance and a powerful road stance. The smart forspeed is fitted
with front tyres in size 205/35 R 18 to match its dynamic look. On
the driven rear axle the tyres measure 235/30 R 18 for full grip.
Purist and sporty interior
The exterior and
interior of the smart forspeed are designed as a formal unit. This
is manifested in numerous details: the tridion safety cell flows
from the outside behind the roll-over bars towards the front to the
cockpit and forms the centre tunnel as a load-bearing part. The
outer and inner door sections connect seamlessly to form a single
component, just like the floor and side walls. The leather seats
also have a one-shell design and are a modern interpretation of
The air inlet in the
wind deflector ends in the central outlet in the centre console and
can provide even more fresh air for the interior when needed.
The high-gloss white of
the exterior paintwork also dominates in the interior. It is
accentuated by green elements such as the sporty four-point seat
belts for driver and passenger or the large horizontal shelf under
the cockpit that provides stowage space. All the control elements
that the driver uses particularly frequently, such as the gear
lever, door openers or steering wheel come in natural brown leather.
By contrast, load-bearing structural components such as the tridion
safety cell or the curved trims on the instrument hoods are in matt
platinum silver. Functional elements such as the steering wheel
buttons and the shift lever with gate are painted in silver shadow.
The open two-seater has
been deliberately designed without an outer door handle – an
interior grip is all that is needed to open the door. The control
for the electric parking brake is particularly convenient to operate
and also has a simple and functional design: the switch on the
centre tunnel is reminiscent of the lever used to pull in the
landing gear of aircraft.
There is a block with
ten LEDs in the middle of the instrument panel. When the forspeed is
started the LEDs shine through the translucent paint and show the
battery charge status of the electric smart. When switched off
noting is seen of the charge indicator except its outline.
Weatherproof thanks to tonneau
cover and coating
The whole interior of
the smart forspeed can be protected against rain and sun when
necessary with a tonneau cover. It is an easy matter to stretch it
over the interior and fasten it to the body with the straps. It can
be divided in the middle with the help of a zip to free the driver's
seat only, for example.
But even without weather protection a downpour will not lead to any
serious problems. Water drainage channels in the vehicle floor
ensure that water is channelled outside. The seat surfaces also have
water drainage channels and all interior equipment has a waterproof
coating for fun behind the wheel regardless of the weather.
Smartphone as a communication
The purist sportiness of
the interior is also reminiscent of classic aircraft construction:
the driver and co-pilot sit in front of two separate round
turbine-like instrument clusters. Whilst the driver has the
speedometer firmly in his field of vision, the passenger is
responsible for communication and navigation: this area of the
cockpit features a smartphone. It can be swivelled by up to 90
degrees in its holder and towards the driver so that the driver can
also take a look at the display of the navigation system.
As in the production
models from smart, the smart drive app for the iPhone® has all the
important features needed whilst driving: phone calls via hands-free
system, navigation with a special smart touch and a Car Finder that
guides the driver back to the parked car.
Intelligent lightweight design,
optimised aerodynamics and state-of-the-art LED technology
With its body made of
glass fibre-reinforced plastic the smart forspeed is a real
lightweight. The low power-to-weight ratio is conducive to driving
pleasure. Moreover, the dynamic two-seater boasts excellent
aerodynamics: round, taut forms, a deliberate lack of joints (for
example on the single-piece front module), smooth, handleless
surfaces on the doors and rear lid and the design of many details
based on aircraft construction reduce aerodynamic resistance.
lighting technology contributes to active safety. Furthermore, it is
controlled intelligently: daytime running lamps are automatically
activated during the daytime. The Citylight system also senses when
the forspeed driver turns night into day: photoelectric sensors
monitor the brightness and give the command to automatically switch
on the low-beam headlamps when necessary.