smart fortwo electric drive to become available worldwide

smart is ramping up production of its third-generation fortwo electric drive, launching an all out attack on the worldwide market.

The new version will be here by next spring with annual output from the Hambach plant rising from a mere 2000 units to five-figures. Not only is the volume increasing but, thanks to a new Lithium-ion battery from Deutsche ACCUmotive – rather than Tesla – the 2012 model jumps from a 20 kW constant (30 kW peak) output to 35 kW constant (55 kW peak). This translates to a 120 km/h top speed (up from 100 km/h) and a 0 – 60 km/h time slashed from 6.5 down to 5 seconds.

The smart’s 17.6 kWh capacity lithium-ion battery provides enough juice for over 140 kilometres of pollutant-free driving fun, and can be charged – via a household socket or charging station – from completely empty to fully charged in around eight hours. If you cant wait that long, the quick-charging function takes less than an hour and uses a heavy-duty power cable to connect the fortwo to a public quick-charging station or a wallbox mounted at work or your home.

[Source: Mercedes-Benz]

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