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Electric Smart Fortwo To Canada

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DAN PROUDFOOTMONTE CARLO — Globe and Mail Update Published on Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2010 6:03PM EST The battery-powered Smart drives better than gasoline- or diesel-fuelled Smarts.This is a first impression – burnished by the tiny two-seater's uncanny ability to skirt the many Bentleys and Ferraris clogging the traffic in this city state. Harbour to casino, only a scooter might be faster.But the electric Smart excels by being quieter and more comfortable than the earlier models Canadians have come to know. Gone is the teeter-totter rocking set off by the automatic gearshift because the electric motor operates with a single gear. (Reverse, when engaged, reverses the motor's direction of rotation.)It is less suited to highway driving with a top speed of 100 km/h. It's recast as a city car, unapologetically, albeit capable of humiliating said Ferraris and Bentleys for the first metre or two of acceleration from a standstill as 120 Newton metres (88.5 lb-ft) of torque drives the lightweight forward. (Before you're through the intersection, though, the electric Smart's progress slows: acceleration to 60 km/h is claimed to be 6.5 seconds, compared with 6.9 for the Brabus model I tested last year.The 45 electric drive Smarts coming to Canada in the fourth quarter of 2010, are from an initial production run of 1,000 that began emerging from the factory in Hambach, France, in November.Mercedes-Benz Canada has yet to decide how they'll be distributed, but in European countries they're leased for €700 (about $1,000) a month, with the car to be returned after four years. With volume production in 2012, they'll “become available to anyone interested,” Mercedes-Benz says.Range is 135 km. Plugging into a normal home electrical outlet overnight facilitates urban driving all day, at a cost of between €2 and €3 (less than $5); 220-volt outlets, like those used for washers and dryers, are required for normal charging time.Cold weather operation is claimed to minus-20 Celsius. And Jochen Eck, in charge of testing, explained the Smart is pre-heated during the charging process. “Once the battery has absorbed 75 per cent of its charge, then the interior is heated or air-conditioned in the summer using the electricity from the grid, and the car can maintain that temperature with less than one kilowatt.” The lithium ion battery has a capacity of 16.5 kwh.Canadians will withhold the Great White North seal of approval until seeing for themselves, but Eck insisted that three winters of testing in the Alps made him confident that (1) interiors can be toasty and (2) range will not be greatly reduced by heating and defrosting requirements.

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Awesome news, I was wondering if they would heat/cool off the grid, would save a lot of the battery charge. Although, that helps on the way to your destination, what happens on the way back, if the car is not plugged in and has been sitting in -30 all day? Will the heater be any better than the "coughing squirell" heater booster the 450's have?

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Yeah it's going to be a tough "sell" at that rate. So the car costs $120 K to make?

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A thousand bucks a month for 48 months? Holy fricking crap.

I bet smart is still loosing money on every single one they lease at that rate too. $1000/month is still a lot of money to pay to be a test driver for them for 4 years.I imagine this will be like the first users of the the Honda FCX. There was a huge process to be allowed to lease one, with many interviews, mandatory dealer servicing etc etc etc. They probably put the "lease" price high so that only people who REALLY want one and be willing to put up with the process and headaches can get one. Hey Duck..you getting one? :lol: Edited by MightyMouseTech

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Well, I could - it's almost as much as I'm paying in maintenance for my car!-Iain

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Well, cars are often more expensive in Europe, so it does not mean that they will be $1000/month here. Still worth it to stay tune for more details about how they will be distributed in Canada. I hope we will get one in Halifax!- MC :)

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$1000 a month is way more than what I currently pay for car payment, insurance, gas, cable bill, phone bill, cellphone bill, water bill, hydro, and haircuts altogether! I wonder how much the Brabus EV version will cost???????? :axehead:

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I will patiently wait to see what actual prices are in 2010 and if they can do something about the operating range.

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