Smart, the division of the Mercedes-Benz Group that, since 2019, has been part of a joint venture with China’s Geely, has revealed the name of its latest vehicle. The company’s SUV crossover, which has been extensively tested at the China Automotive Engineering Research Institute and is due to be launched later in 2022, will be known as the smart #1.
The smart #1 is the first of a new range of vehicles from the German-Chinese manufacturer as part of its rebirth as “a premium all-electric automotive technology brand”.
Testing has measured a drag coefficient performance of 0.29, a factor which is important as the drag coefficient influences the vehicle’s energy consumption, range, wind noise and stability at high speed.
The #1 has been designed with short overhangs at each end to optimise interior space, a panoramic sunroof and frameless doors which are opened by touch-sensitive light panels, rather than handles.
Few technical details about the vehicle have been released but the #1 has been tested in the far North of China, one of the world’s coldest testing grounds where temperatures can fall as low as -40⁰C. The company reports that “the #1 “showed excellent resistance to extreme cold.” To further facilitate operating in extreme temperatures, the #1’s concealed door handles are equipped with an ice breaking function.
VP of Research and Development at smart Automobile, Yang Jun, is pleased with the results of testing and is looking forward to the launch of the #1 later in 2022.
“Thanks to the seamless cooperation between the smart and Mercedes-Benz design team, the smart #1 is a masterpiece of engineering,” said Yang Jun. “The pre-market test results also prove the outstanding quality, performance and reliability of the smart #1. With the car due to launch later this year, these developments make us confident that it will be well received by its future customers.”
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