Smart says it will take some inspiration from the first relaunched Mini models of the early 2000s with its next-generation family of models.
Mercedes-Benz recently sold half of the Smart brand to Geely and will jointly-run the city car company out of a production base in China. Successors to the current Fortwo and Forfour are expected to launch in 2022 and after that, the car manufacturer will launch a larger vehicle in the B-segment.
“The key point is that sexiness sells, and in that regard I look to those first Minis for inspiration,” he said. “There was a simplicity, a voluptuousness that gave them unique appeal – and the challenge is to get those kinds of shapes without growing the car too far or making it look too heavy. We are just at the start of the process now with Geely, but we know what direction we want to go in. Smart has grown up as a brand – it is no longer a child – and it can be justified in going in a sexier, sportier direction with its styling,” Wagener added.
Before this happens, however, Smart will hope to send off the current Fortwo and Forfour models with good sales on the back of launching facelifted versions at the recent Frankfurt Motor Show. Both models feature a rear-mounted electric motor delivering 80 hp and 118 lb-ft (254 Nm) of torque, allowing for a 0-62 mph (100 km/h) time of 11.6 seconds for the hardtop Fortwo, 11.9 seconds for the Fortwo Cabriolet, and 12.7-seconds for the Forfour.