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by Jay Traugott
Taking the Smart idea to bigger dimensions, the Forstars concept is a more stylish preview of the next-generation city car from Daimler.
Smart is not a brand that's known for its style, but the city-car division from Daimler has attempted to turn that notion on its head this year in Paris with the Forstars concept. The company describes the Forstars as a Sports Utility Coupe. Which strikes us as a bit of a stretch, but then that's what the concept is all about. Ditching the perpendicular parkability of the existing Fortwo, the Forstars concept previews the next-generation city car from Smart.
The overall dimensions of the Forstars concept places it only nine inches shorter than the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class. It's also a bit wider than the existing Smart Fortwo, and has an overall more aggressive stance that bridges the gap between the Fortwo and the discontinued Smart Roadster. Power comes courtesy of the Smart Electric's Brabus-tuned 60-kW electric motor, fueled by a 17.6-kW lithium-ion battery pack. It's not exactly what we'd call "fast" (top speed is quoted at 80 mph), but it's good enough for what the Forstars concept was designed to be: an efficient city car with room for two and a few small bags.
Features include Bluetooth, an advanced sound system that includes loudspeakers in the vents behind the doors, a built-in movie projector for a "drive-in cinema experience" and a glass cover over the cargo area which opens upwards. Whether Smart puts the Forstars into production in its current form or shrinks it to dimensions more typical to the brand remains to be seen, but we wouldn't expect the projector to make the cut. (Live images courtesy of Omniauto.it