Although the 2012 Detroit Auto Show will open its doors in January, Daimler decided to reveal today the Smart For-Us Concept. According to the manufacturer the For-Us shows how an urban pickup should look like or a pickup of the 21st century urban traffic. With its exterior dimensions (length/width/height: 3547/1506/1701mm) the Smart For-Us Concept is powered by a 55 kW magneto-electric motor delivering 130 Newton metres of torque.
The For-Us has a maximum speed of 120 km/h, while the lithium-ion battery has capacity of 17.6 kWh. What is more interesting is that the tailboard at the rear of the smart for-us is electrically driven and when it opens first of all the cargo floor including tailboard retracts by 280 mm, then the tailgate slides down in a parallel position.
Smart Automobile has unveiled the smart for-us Concept to the global public at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, thereby challenging the usual definition of American automotive freedom. Automotive freedom in the United States has been defined by the "bigger is better" mentality. This is why the US automotive landscape has been dominated by larger vehicles, like pickup trucks.
However, the smart for-us Concept is being groomed as a counter to this mentality, especially with its small and agile nature and its pickup truck bed, as well as it zero-emission character. Measuring 3,547 mm in length, 1,506 mm in width and 1,701 mm in height, the smart for-us Concept is very small compared to a typical pickup. It rides on a wheelbase that is longer by 613 mm (at 2,480 mm) than its production sibling, with a track that is wider by 50 mm on each side.
Its elegantly compact character is furthered by its extremely short front and rear overhangs. However, the concept is intrinsically smart, thanks to an array of features as well as the visible tridion safety cell. As it is, the smart for-us Concept has a sassy and robust appearance.
In addition, the smart for-us Concept – both inside and outside – sports a number of enchanting details that should allow its occupants to cheerfully enjoy life. Compared with the smart fortwo production car, the smart for-us concept features a more dynamic visual statement, with an appearance that teases the aggressive image of conventional pickups.
Donning a friendly yet assertive front fascia, the smart for-us Concept is also laden with convex and sensuously shaped surfaces. Its 3D front end is marked by grille on which a large brand emblem is mounted. An underride guard completes the lower part of the front end.
The new smart for-us features a ride height that is around 50 mm higher than a standard smart, which makes it ideal for off-road driving. smart is eyeing to employ a 4x4 system to match the concept electric drive, with two front wheel hub motors. The smart for-us rides on three-spoke wheels which has wing nuts on the central mounts that could fold out and serve as a lever for releasing the wheel nuts.
These wheels are wrapped in Michelin off-road tires measuring 235/55 R 18. On the rear, the smart for-us Concept feature stunning rhombic front and tail lights that look similar to those on the smart forvision that shocked visitors at Frankfurt Motor Show in September.
The indicators and daytime running lamps are illuminated by outer rings featuring several rod-shaped LED units. Rear lamps, meanwhile, seemingly push outwards like the drops on the cockpit window of an airplane.
Interestingly, users could open the tail lights for extra stowage space. On the other hand, the smart for-us concept features an electrically driven tailboard, which, along with the cargo floor, could be retracted through remote control or by touching the integrated touchpad. Once they are retracted, the tailgate slides down in a parallel position to allow easy access of cargo.