We got smarts

I admit to having had a qualm or two about the teensy smart fortwo, inasmuch as the sort of high-density traffic mazes in which they’d seem to flourish hardly exist out here on the Plains.

Now that they’ve arrived here, a happy owner reports:

We just took delivery today. And we are very impressed. I live in Oklahoma City and the Smart dealer is located in Tulsa, which is about 100 miles. The drive back home was perfect. The car had no problem with keeping up with traffic, which on the turnpike speeds average 75-80mph. 80mph was not an issue to keep up. When we originally test drove the car during the tour, the cars seemed a little bouncy and jerky. Our cabrio is very solid and smooth. Top up on the highway, there is very little wind noise. Top down is stupendous. And the premium sound system ROCKS!!! All in all we couldn’t be happier with our purchase. And for the days driving, after taking it on a tour to friends to show off, we averaged 44 mpg. WOOHOO! One other thing to point out, the attention the car gets is insane. I felt like I was in a parade on the highway. I have never had so many people waving and smiling and pointing. Some even snapped pictures.

The automated-manual transmission, however, is not your standard slushbox by any means:

This is not a typical automatic that we are used to in the US. If you drive it like one, the shifting is sluggish. However! If, when it comes time for it to shift, let off the gas just a little and it’s quite smooth. In other words, you drive it like a typical standard transmission, you just don’t have a clutch to push in. My dealer instructed on this at delivery and it took a little getting used to. But after a full day of driving you don’t even think about it.

Still, every car has its quirks, and this particular quirk doesn’t seem severe. Traffic on the Turner does move routinely at around 80 mph — posted speed limit is 75 — and I figure if the sheer volume of eighteen-wheelers didn’t prove intimidating, smart should have no trouble selling a bunch of these little darbs here in the Sooner State.

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