The second generation fortwo, introduced in the 2008 model year
, is already up for a facelift. That's quite surprising given that the first-gen fortwo went almost 10 years with little in the way of changes. The game-plan then was to introduce special editions and concepts on a regular basis in order to maintain interest. This time around and as competition grows around the World in the micro-car segment, Mercedes has decided, wisely we would add, to keep the diminutive car fresh and interesting.
At first glance, the “new” fortwo looks cleaner and smoother. In fact, little has changed on the outside except for new colours and alloy wheels. Some of the shades now being made available are matte finish including light green and light blue metallic. The cabrio soft top will be offered in red and blue and the tridion safety cell, in a brilliant white.
To further make the fortwo a premium micro-compact (much like the upcoming Scion iQ
), LED daytime driving lights will be on the option list. If you look at the pictures carefully, you will notice that they resemble those found on the recently introduced Mercedes E-Class.
The spacious cabin also gets a once over and it goes upscale. Dials now come with a contrasting dark central disc in the cluster and the entire dashboard is fabric-covered; often a better idea than crude plastics. The list of interior is fairly extensive. A 3-spoke leather steering wheel with cruise control and trip computer, ambient lighting with dimmable LED and a large stowage box are all available for those that want to customize their diminutive urban cruisers.
As the trend goes, the fortwo's engines are now cleaner and more efficient than ever. In Europe, they will include a 40 kW (54 hp) cdi turbodiesel (CO2 emissions of just 86 g/km), petrol-consuming 45 kW (61 hp) and 52 kW (71 hp) that consume under 4.5 l per 100 km (CO2 emissions of 97 g/km) and a 62 kW (84 hp) version that needs less than 5 l over 100 km (CO2 emissions of 114 g/km). The sexy BRABUS edition sports a 75 kW (102 hp) gas engine and its emission are of only 119 g CO2 per 100 kilometres.
As for North America, details are scarce but we do not expect to get the entire line-up of powertrains. We're torn between the cdi, reasonable 52 kW and BRABUS engines. If we had to pick one, we'd stick with the diesel but we know better... Whatever we do get, we pray that we will get a taste of a real BRABUS
at some point.
The smart fortwo will be launched in the autumn of 2010 in most World markets. Thanks to Auto123.com, you won't have to wait that long to find out more about the new fortwo. Our own Luc Gagné will be spending time behind to wheel of the smart in a few short weeks so come back to read his driving impressions.