Electric cars-eco-friendly-Renault Twizy and Smart Fortwo

by Webllena on Friday, December 20, 2013

in About Cars

Smart Fortwo electric
Now in its third-generation guise, the Smart Fortwo electric drive,
like the Twizy, is an automotive product that makes sense for
Smart-for-two--people who spend the majority of their time living and working in
congested city centers.
Our time with the all-electric Smart was brief but telling. Far
more practical and comfortable than its Renault counterpart
but somewhat less fun to drive, the Fortwo’s drivetrain consists
of a 17.6kWh lithium-ion battery pack that’s been developed
by Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUmotive, and a 55kW
magneto-electric motor – the first product to come from the
Daimler-Bosch EM-motive joint venture. This new setup means
that out goes the 30kW electric motor that once
graced the second-generation Smart Fortwo
electric drive, together with the Tesla-developed lithium-ion battery pack.    image-motorauthority
The result of such technological
upgrades means that the new Fortwo
electric drive is even more impressive in
the real world. The two-seater Smart can
sprint from 0 to 60km/h in five seconds (1.5
seconds quicker than the previous electric
model); offers a top speed of 120km/h (up by
20km/h), thus putting the EV on par with the IC-engined Smart models; and boasts an enhanced driving range of
140km. This latter point is particularly pertinent because, unlike
the Twizy and other such smaller electric vehicles, this third-generation Smart Fortwo electric drive does have the capacity to
venture out from the city center from time to time. It might not
be the most pleasant of journeys – and indeed there will only be a
limited amount of stuff you’ll be able to take on a country retreat
weekend (as well as having to plan carefully for recharging) – but
a driving range that’s nearly double that of the Twizy, as well as a
far more comfortable cabin, means that the all-electric Smart does
have more to it than just urban functionality. Just as important
is that the new Fortwo electric drive also benefits from a 22kW
onboard charger that enables a completely empty battery to be
fully charged in less than an hour.

Renault Twizy

Designed from the wheels up as a full electric vehicle aimed at
revolutionizing urban mobility, the Twizy is a truly unique
product. On that basis alone, much kudos is due to Renault for
daring to come up with such an avant-garde creation, and in many
respects the Twizy really does take the notion of future sustainable
transportation and makes it available in the here and now.
renaulttwizy-electric-car_The two-seater, 2.34m-long, 1.24m-wide eco-friendly vehicle
is ripe for the bustle of congested urban centers, with its squat
proportions allowing it to slip into the smallest of gaps and park
in spaces that other four-wheeler applications – including the
Smart Fortwo – can only dream about. What’s more, weighing
just 450kg means that there’s sufficient city center performance to
be had: zero to 45km/h takes no more than six seconds, which is
on a par with a 125cc scooter over a distance of 50m. The Twizy’s
performance comes from a 13kW, 57Nm electric motor placed at
the rear, while the 6.1kWh lithium-ion battery pack is at the front.                 image-theautospy
Critics of the Twizy have been quick to point out that the vehicle
is not practical, lacks storage space, has a limited driving range
and can be exposed to the elements (although Renault has since
introduced a winter windows zip-on
kit). While such points are valid, in
many respects the bigger picture
is being missed: this quadricycle-classified vehicle makes a lot of
sense for those that live and
work in the very center of
densely populated cities, and
that’s especially the case when
said urban dwellings are in
countries that tend to be hot and
don’t suffer from year-round rain. Twizy has not been created for
rural areas or even those living on the periphery of major towns.
A driving range of 80km is realistic on one full charge – and we
tested our Twizy in some harshly cold conditions. A complete charge
takes around 200 minutes. Finally, not only is it fun to drive and
attracts attention like no other vehicle we’ve had on test, but it’s
also very affordable, with prices starting at US$9,200!

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