The Smart Fo-Us was a tiny little pickup concept. One that measured just 11.6 feet (3.5 metres) long, and was powered by an equally unintimidating 75 horsepower electric motor.
The Smart For-Us concept clearly isn’t aimed at your average construction worker, landscape gardener or farmer. Instead its puny cargo area is designed to fit the needs of a typical urbanite. There’s enough room to carry a coupe of Smart ebikes, and even a coupe of integrated charging ports to keep the bikes topped up.
The styling of the Smart For-Us concept is designed to be both friendly and fun. The vehicle has almost cartoonish proportions due to its compact dimensions. To facilitate access to the cargo, the tailboard at the rear of the Smart For-Us is electrically powered. When it opens, all the cargo floor including tailboard retracts by 280 mm, then the tailgate slides down into a parallel position.
The exposed cockpit has been designed to make the most of the air passing through it for better ventilation. The seat shells, which are open in the middle, are covered with a soft yellow fabric, giving them a hammock-like seating feel. In place of a conventional rear-view mirror the Smart For-Us features a smartphone mounted in a holder on top of the instrument panel. With this, the driver can see what is happening on the road behind with the help of an integrated rear-view video camera. A pointless gimmick really. A normal mirror would be far more practical.
The electric drivetrain of the Smart For-Us is based on that used in the Smart ForTwo electric drive – due in the spring of 2012. The 75 hp (55kW) magneto-electric motor boasts a respectable (for a compact car) 98 ft-lbs (130 Nm) of torque. And being an electric motor 100 percent of the torque is available from zero rpm. It’s no rocketship though, and the top speed is just 75 mph (120 km/h).