Spied in Los Angeles! 2015 Smart Fortwo Mules Have Come Stateside

By Jacob Brown | December 06, 2013
Let's be completely honest: There have been Smart Fortwo mules running around Europe for months now, and we haven't picked up any of the spy shots of them simply because it's not that interesting of a car. The car sells in scant numbers for the U.S. and is largely considered one of the worst new cars on sale today and a flop--a very expensive flop--for Mercedes-Benz, which at one point bought out the entire project from its Swatch watch cofounder (yes, those people) because its executives felt this new city car would be the wave of the future.
So we've been reluctant to cover it. But recently, we found the prototypes for the 2015 Smart Fortwo roaming around Los Angeles, so we figured "Why not?"
Sharing body panels with the European Renault Twingo, which will be using some of the same components as the Smart in its next generation, we expect the 2015 Smart to grow in size and refinement versus the current car, if only slightly. The Mitsubishi-sourced drivetrain--the engine and truly awful single-clutch automated five speed--are expected to be replaced by parts shared with Renault. Smart will likely continue using a three-cylinder engine, but after consulting with Ford, we expect it ought to be good this time.
Seeing the vents in the rear bumper similar to the current model's, we expect the Smart Fortwo to remain rear-engine and rear-wheel drive in configuration, placing the engine underneath the passengers. As Smart has figured out how to make a decently safe car without much room, we expect this new version to be that much better.
Already, Smart has previewed this car by way of its 2011 Smart Forvision concept shown here and its Smart Forstars concept follow-up. At a time when rumors are circulating that Toyota will soon discontinue its Scion iQ, Mercedes-Benz is pressing on with development. Even though these development mules look rough, remember that the Smart Fortwo uses plastic body panels that can easily be replaced by production pieces. We don't think these cars are as early in their development cycle as they appear. Look for the production version sometime in 2014, with the car hitting showrooms shortly thereafter.
Yeezus Christ
Yeezus Christ

good lord what the hell did they do to the smart thats ugliest crap i've ever seen way to go smart you just ruined the cars image entirely