Smart says the car’s “silhouette offers a look at the company’s future design idiom”, confirming the concept offers a glimpse of what we can expect from the third-generation Fortwo and the return of the Forfour.
Daimler is currently developing both models in conjunction with Renault-Nissan as part of an engine- and platform-sharing arrangement. The likes of the Renault Twingo will be built off the same rear-wheel-drive platform, with the cars using three-cylinder petrol and diesel engines.
The Forstars name is a “tongue in cheek reference” to the concept’s glass roof, which allows for a spot of star-gazing. It’s matched by a glass tailgate that lifts up to reveal a cargo area larger than that found in the current Fortwo.
The Smart Forstars concept is a further design development of the Forus concept show at the 2012 Detroit motor show.
It is a two-seater still, but noticeably longer than the current Fortwo at 3550mm, and with a 2470mm wheelbase that’s 603mm longer. It retains a wheel-at-each-corner stance, with those wheelarches filled by huge 21-inch tyres.
There’s a cheekiness to the styling that includes a ‘smiling’ face complete with ‘eyebrows’ above the headlights.
There are LED daytime running lights, and the tail-lights open – with the right tail-light concealing a charging socket for the 60kW/135Nm magneto-electric motor that powers the car.
The zero-emissions drivetrain is from the Brabus Fortwo electric car that can propel the Smart Forstars to a top speed of 129km/h.
Unlike the exterior, the shiny red and white interior – complete with bejewelled gearlever, foot pedals and instrument dials – looks pure concept.
There are hammock-style leather front seats, a U-shaped steering wheel and a rear-view camara is replaced by a windscreen-mounted smartphone with integrated video camera.
Smartphones come into play again with the “open air cinema” feature, where a media player is operated by iPhone Bluetooth to play movies onto a white wall via the projector that’s integrated into the bonnet.
Speakers for the sound system are embedded into vent openings behind the doors.
In addition to sharing some visual cues with the Forus, the Smart Forstars concept also features a lower tailgate section that opens electrically to reveal a retractable floor with a 900mm-long cargo space.
Click on the Photos tab for more images of the Smart Forstars.
The 2012 Paris motor show starts on Thursday 27th September.