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DaimlerChrysler Unveils New smart fortwo; Micro-Hybrid Version in 2007

10 November 2006

Smart42coupe
The new smart fortwo coupé.

DaimlerChrysler unveiled the new gasoline- and diesel-powered smart fortwo city cars yesterday evening in Stuttgart, Germany. The company said it will introduce a micro-hybrid version (starter/generator with stop-start capability) on one of the models in 2007.

The new smart fortwo coupé and smart fortwo cabrio offer a range of new all-aluminum gasoline engines, developed in cooperation with Mitsubishi. Engine capacity has been increased from 0.7 to 1.0 liters. There are two naturally aspirated engine versions to choose from, delivering 45 or 52 kW (60 / 70 hp) respectively, and a turbo engine rated at 62 kW (83 hp). Torque for the gasoline models is 89 Nm (66 lb-ft), 92 Nm (68 lb-ft) and 121 Nm (89 lb-ft) respectively.

The 3-cylinder engine is mounted transversally in front of the rear axle, and is slanted at an angle of 45 degrees towards the rear. The cylinder barrels take the form of grey cast iron liners. Gas exchange is controlled by four valves per combustion chamber. The valves are controlled by separate intake and exhaust camshafts, via bucket tappets.

To allow high torque to be developed even at low engine speeds, the intake camshafts can be twisted electro-hydraulically against the exhaust camshafts (variable valve control). The camshafts are driven via a maintenance-free timing chain.

Because the masses being moved are low, there is no need for a balancer shaft—which would reduce the output of the engine. However, in the turbo version there is a torsional vibration damper on the crankshaft.

The maximum charge pressure is 0.5 bar, with control taking place via a wastegate valve in the turbocharger. To ensure a long service life, the charger is fitted with a water cooling system, while the charge air cooler is based on air/air technology and is located behind the transmission.

The gasoline engines comply with exhaust gas standard Euro 4. The naturally aspirated engines’ compression ratio is 11.5:1, while in the turbo engine it is 10:1.

In addition to the increase in power, the maximum speed has also been increased to 145 kph (90 mph)—10 kph more than the predecessor model.

Standard fuel consumption of the gasoline variants is less than five liters of fuel per 100 km (47 mpg US). From the end of 2007, DaimlerChrysler will offer a micro-hybrid version of the 52 kW smart engine with a starter-generator for stop-start functionality. This will reduce fuel consumption in city traffic by up to 13%, bring it to approximately 4.35 liters/100km (54 mpg US) under the appropriate conditions.

DaimlerChrysler enhanced the performance of the cdi diesel engine by 10%, resulting in output of 33 kW (44 hp). The diesel is also Euro-4 compliant. With fuel consumption of less than 3.5 l/100km (67 mpg US), the smart diesel emits only 90g/km of CO2.

Its diesel particle filter (open system), which stops more than 40% of soot emissions, is unique in its segment, according to DaimlerChrysler. As of 2008, the smart fortwo cdi will be available with a closed system.

All engines are linked to an automated manual five-speed transmission produced by Getrag that has also been re-engineered. In the new smart fortwo there is once again no clutch pedal, as this task is performed by an electric motor. If the shift lever on the centre console is briefly tapped forwards, the transmission will switch up a gear, and if it is drawn back, down a gear.

An automated gear program—standard on one model (passion) and optional on others (pure and pulse) is triggered by a small button on the shift lever which is preferred for use in stop-and-go traffic.

November 10, 2006 in City car, Diesel, Fuel Efficiency, Hybrids | Permalink | Comments (48) | TrackBack (0)

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These tiny things have been out for a bit? How safe are they in a collision?

A few years ago the GEO Metro XFi was getting almost 60mpg, but US drivers wanted more power, so the engine was upgraded from 1.0 to 1.3 liters, downgrading fuel consumption to 35mpg. Is the increase in engine volume on the smart a similar step in the wrong direction?

Here we go again. Idle stop does not a hybrid make. If they could employ Toyota's hybrid system, sized for similar performance, the mileage would be nearly off the charts!

i disagree. I would be very happy with idle stop. It is a very reasonable compromise between a lightweight, simple, and high mpg vehicle and the heavier, more complex, and more battery dependent strong hybrid. Your off the chart mileage is meaningless if you spend money on batteries and maintenance instead of gas.

Heres the Smart crashtest :) ... 5 years ago I saw a picture taken from a crashtest BMW against Smart and the BMW looked pretty twisted ...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=Q91UIYquAW8

That is an impressive video. It shows that this lightweight car can take an impact. It is a matter of design, materials and engineering. This is one of the areas where we can really save fuel, making lighter cars that are really strong and safe.

Can we petition/propose for a vehicle tax proportional to the weight of vehicles. We can call this the slaughter tax because heavier vehicles usually slaughters lighter vehicles like this one. In a way this can compensate for the carnage that the SUV usually does to small cars, and for that, they should have the burden of payment for insurance, road repairs, greater carbon emissions. Let us say the initial tax for vehicles as heavy as SUV would be $24,000 during the sales plus $4,000 per year, while vehicles like the smart4two the tax would only be $4/year and $1 for the sales, the rest in between are proportionately taxed depending on gross weight.

"Your off the chart mileage is meaningless if you spend money on batteries and maintenance instead of gas"

Ben, your assertion is based on what price for petrol? Last time I checked the ICE was a higher maintenance system vis-a-vis a true atkinson hybrid.

If gas goes to 5 bucks a gallon this car has a chance
also consumer reports didnt give it good marks

So this car gets about the same MPG as a Prius. Consumer Reports Canada (where Smart cars are on sale) called the smart the worst car they had tested to date. I think that people who are all wound up about the Smart might sing a different tune if they tried one.

The only reason these aren't made electric is because there aren't enough places to plug-in around the city & countryside.

I think it is time for cities and businesses to start to create the charging infrastructure now.

Once in place, people early adopters will buy EVs and then the rest will follow.

joe - i am talking about life cycle costs, not what it costs in the first few years before major components go. Also, the essence of this car is its size, you won't be able to cram batteries and hybrid tech in it. Finally, if it already gets 55 mpg with the idle stop, then you are looking at a pretty tiny boost with your hybrid- maybe another 10 mpg and thats just for city miles. So gas would probably need to be 3-4 times where it is now (in US) to make this economic. Of course if you just want to have bragging rights to highest mpg, then great, but if you only sell 3 of them, it doesn't help anyone.

FYI – Consumer Reports is sometimes the biggest load of crap on the planet. remember, they were the ones that said that hybrids are still "more expensive" than their gasoline-only counterparts and that you never make back the difference over the life of the car. anyone who makes such obviously erroneous claims loses all credibility in my book.


$5 a gallon for gas, what are you talking about. The Dem's are in power now. Bush and his cronies won't be able to manipulate gas prices to line thier pockets. Gas should be about $1.30 a gallon by February.

Joseph

The word was If. What i was saying is this car does not have a chance

lensovet:

In that CR article you read they made the VERY basic accounting mistake of including both the initial cost of the vehicle and it's depreciation in it's calculations. So the higher price of the vehicle was counted twice. The dopes hid the retraction in fine print on the inside of their magasine the next month. The damage was already done. I've noticed that both CR and the Lemonaid people have become very rigid in their views. They need to get with the times.

What were the negative comments by Consumer Reports in regards to the Smart FourTwo?

The CR Report is crap - who here takes mainstream car journalism seriously nowadays? These are the same people trying to get you to believe that the 0-60 spec is what you should be most concerned about.

Anyway... the car HAS been well received in Canada by it's owners. I am nearing 100,000 kms on mine, and lately, I can get 70 mpg (US) with the diesel.

The next generation is going to be a great car.

Keith, what was in the CR Report that makes it crap?

I don't want to know if you think the report is garbage I want to know what they specifically cited as a negative attribute.

If it were car & driver I'd suspect that it wasn't fun enough around a twisty road course. With consumer reports I'd guess they would complain about the interior space for groceries & cup holders...but if they claim that it has a higher number of reliability related issues than the norm for the segment the vehicle competes in; then it is a valid concern in my eyes (just as an example). I just want to see the data for myself so I can form my own opinion based on the data.

Why on earth does anyone rely on CR for automotive reviews?

Anyway - go here:

http://www.clubsmartcar.ca/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6397

Now - about reliability, the 2005 smart, according to a German automotive survey, was the MOST reliable out of 78 surveyed... to see that, go here:

http://www.100mpg.ca/wp-content/pannenstatistik 2005.jpg

And finally, the 2008 is re-engineered, and has double the storage capacity behind it's two seats. (Not that it really needed it - I drove across Canada and back over 33 days and 10,000 miles with no issues for space...) To see my article about the new smart, and get a copy of the press release, go here:

http://100mpg.ca/?p=149

I don't rely on them for news otherwise I probably would have seen the article already. I was just interested in what they had to say. It seemed like mostly opinion with no hard numbers other than the 22 second 0-60 time.

Thanks for the link.

You're welcome.

CR continues with the sleaze in the way they try to align the price of the smart against the Prius... First by showing a loaded smart passion in USD after tax, and then comparing it against the US pre-tax MSRP of the base model Prius. And this for a 'Canadian' issue of the magazine?

Here's the real facts:

Base price of smart in Canada: $16,700
Base price of Prius in Canada: $31,280

DCX should sue CR, IMO.

Actually, there were quite a lot of credible researches which indicate that by $ per mile basis Prius is slightly more expensive than comparable gasoline car (for regular yearly travel of about 15K miles). However, I do not have much credibility to these claims. Couple of factors are still at play which makes it difficult to make solid comparison:

Prius is still highly subsidized.
Nobody really know how much it is really more expensive then regular car: Prius is still selling as hot cake, so Toyota has no reason to reduce it price and their profit margin.
Resale value of Prius is still quite abnormal – due to shortage of supply it does not depreciate as regular vehicles are.
Data on long-term maintenance savings is still insufficient.
Fuel saving in real-life city driving is way higher then governmental estimations.

Couple of things are already proved quite decisively. In taxi service Prius is capable to run up to 1 million kilometers without reliability problems. Saves in fuel and maintenance in taxi service are very substantial.

And people love their Priuses.

There are over 500 diesel smarts happily running around Victoria BC right now. Good thing they didn't read CR.

Unfortunately a lot of people did read the CR article on hybrid returns.

Hats off to all those who buy fuel efficient cars. CR has trouble thinking outside the box. They panned the Insight too. Thankfully I ignored them. :D

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