Originally posted on CleanTechnica
This weekend saw a pair of electric supercars debut at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, the $152,000 Saleen FourSixteen and the $529,000, 500 horsepower Renovo Coupe. Both of these electric cars can compete with gas-powered competitors…but most of us can’t afford them either. But how does the Smart ForTwo Electric Drive do in a drag race? Well, better than you might expect…if you look at it the right way of course.
See, as an electric car, the Smart ForTwo ED delivers 100% of its torque at 0 RPM, enabling it to leave the start line with quite a bit of oomph. How does it fare against some legitimate performance cars though, like the Ford Mustang GT or Porsche 911? Well as this tongue-in-cheek video from Smart shows, those cars (as well as a big Audi sedan) will leave the Smart ForTwo ED in the dust in a traditional, quarter-mile drag race, almost to the point of hilarity, as it takes the little electric car 11.5 seconds to reach 60 MPH, as the Smart has just 40 horsepower to work with under optimal conditions. That’s less than 10% of the horsepower that the Tesla Model S P85+ has to work with.
In other words, the Smart ForTwo Electric is not a performance car. Yet as the video points out towards the end, it’s not meant to be a performance car…it’s a city car. And you know what matters in the city? The first five meters of acceleration, and even against the mighty Mustang and Porsche, the Smart’s instant torque allows it to zip in front of competitors on congested city streets.
That matters a lot more than you might think, and even with its small size and performance, the Smart ForTwo Electric Drive looks like more fun than it ought to be.