Smart Appears To Have Gone Boxy With Its Third New Model

This upcoming new smart model will likely make its official debut in April’s Beijing Auto Show. 

When smart was revived under the co-parenting of Geely and Mercedes-Benz in 2019, the deal was for the former to be responsible for the engineering and manufacturing side of things, while the latter takes care of the design bit. And at least from the spy shots of its next model, the three-pointed star marque might have just taken more than a little inspiration from its GLB with regard to its exterior aesthetic. 

A departure from the current blobby silhouettes of the smart #1 and #3, this third model in the new smart lineup does certainly look to be of a more squarely-styled breed like what is currently seen on Mercedes’ own mini SUV. In spite of the heavy camouflage too on this pre-production vehicle, it is not all that hard to pick out the presence of a roof rack and LED lights bookending its rather short overhangs. 

What is however a tad harder to pin down thus far with what is currently known internally by smart as the HY11 is whether it is a minivan or an SUV. It is also still not too certain at this point in time if this low-slung yet boxy crossover between the two aforementioned segments will be only capable of seating 5, or will have an extra third row as per the similarly-styled GLB.  

The spy shots regarding its interior does nevertheless show for this longer smart to also have a similarly elongated central screen within, which stretches all the way across the dashboard on the passenger side. The driver meanwhile continues to net its own digital instrument cluster, along with a heads-up display. 

Other details gleaned from between the sheets covering its interior is the presence of wood trim on the doors and a rather chunky oblong metallic inner door release handle. These spy shots further reveal for the front seats (with door-mounted electrical adjustments) to be covered in fabric, while a brown leather lines the centre console armrest and steering wheel. 

Details regarding what exactly will power this new smart is still under wraps, but it can be reasonably expected that it will ride on Geely’s SEA platform and feature an 800-volt electrical architecture. One rather interesting chassis-related quirk too discovered from these spy shots is for this upcoming model to feature a double wishbone front suspension setup with aluminium steering knuckles, which is a step up from the McPherson front suspension currently found on the #1 and #3.

Current industry rumours suggest for this new smart to make its initial debut in China during the Beijing Auto Show in April, with sales set to begin later on in the year. It remains to see if this more practical model will make its way over here any time soon, but given the aggressive push of this marque over here, there is actually be a good chance for it to land locally after the imminent arrival of the #3. 


Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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