The next big auto show will take place at the turn of the calendar, but as early as now, we’re getting a good look at some of the concepts that are scheduled to be in attendance at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show in January.
The car is called the "For-Us" Urban Pick-Up Concept that Smart is describing as a concept targeted to the "young and young-at-heart with active lives who attach importance to low emissions and taking up minimum road space."
The description is pretty much apt to all their previous concepts so there’s nothing unique there. What’s different, though, is that the For-Us Urban Pick-Up Concept comes with an electrically-powered tailboard that opens and retracts with a 900mm cargo area that’s big enough to hold and serve as a charging port for as much as two Smart E-Bikes.
This review has been updated with official details and photos that you can find after the jump
The exterior of the For-Us Concept is a picture of sassiness mixed in with a futuristic style that is par for the course for Smart. The concept features convex and sensuously shaped body surfaces with the front end sporting a pronounced three-dimensional design that comes with underride guard and a large brand emblem that’s displayed on the car’s front grille.
Compared to the standard Smart vehicle, the For-Us’ ride height is raised by 50 millimeters, making it ideally suited to be a car that hit a number of off-road surfaces. Even as a quirky pick-up, the For-Us is made as a versatile vehicle with plenty of potential.
Another unique feature of the For-Us are the rhombic head and tail lights that bears similarity to the ones designed on the For-Vision Concept, which we first saw at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The outer rings illuminate the indicators and daytime running lamps with a large number of rod-shaped LEDs. Ever the purveyor of some unique traits, the For Us’ tail lights can also serve as stowage space for a number of items, particularly that of charging cables and the like.
The car also has a tailboard at the rear that can be remotely driven either through remote control or touching the integrated touchpad, which then retracts the cargo floor including tailboard by 280 mm with the tailgate then sliding down in a parallel position.
For all the freshness and exuberance on full display with the For-Us’ exterior, the car’s interior offers equal amounts of charming appeal, beginning with the sleek, taut surfaces in mother-of-pearl white combined with precisely designed technical functional elements in brushed aluminum.
The white metallised leather fitted into the For-US establishes a link to the instrument panel, which in turn is related to the body. Similarly, the headrests have been dressed with a metallic leather with matching yellow accents adding all up to a very delightful ambience.
Another unique feature of the For-Us’ interior is its aerodynamic styling, which places certain parts on calculated locations to provide utmost interior ventilation. For example, the control and display elements are oriented to the driver while the cockpit module divides the instrument panel. Incidentally, the concept doesn’t have a rearview mirror. Instead, it comes with an integrated video camera that allows the driver to see the rear end of the car.
The pair of seat shells are also a cool highlight go the interior with the seats covered with a soft fabric throw giving them a hammock-like seating feel. With the prevalent use of yellow throughout the car, the seat covers are no different. The yellow covers come with a deep embossed silver hexagon pattern indicating a progression and thus emphasising the vehicle’s dynamism.
As far as powertrain goes, the For-Us Concept will be powered by a magneto-electric motor to go with a 17.6-kWh lithium-ion battery. Together, the hybrid motor produces an output of 75 horsepower and 96 lb/ft of torque. Seeing as this is a future peg for a city car, the For-Us Concept’s top speed only hits 75 mph.
Will We See It In Production?
The Smart For Us Concept is an intriguing car, to say the least. But just like past Smart concepts, we don’t expect the car to translate past this stage. Certain elements of it could end up in production as parts of a separate model, but as far as a production model based on the For Us Concept is concerned, we won’t hold our breaths until we hear it straight from Smart.
- Freshly designed exterior
- Concept-like interior looks cool
- Technological features reminds us of a real-sized toy
- Unlikely to hit production
- Is it all it says it is?