Fun, reliable, commuter
January 11, 2019
I picked up my 2011 earlier this year with 30k miles on it. It's a Passion with pretty much all the available options from that model year, with auto transmission and paddle-shifters.
Once I got used to the automated-manual transmission, this thing is quite fun to drive. Using the paddle-shifters can really help in certain situations, too. It has plenty of pep, and moves quickly around town. Even on the freeway I find it quick and easy to get it up to 70 and to keep up with traffic.
The cabin is fun, comfortable, and very spacious for the two passengers. I have more leg room and head room in this than in anything else I've owned, and I'm 6' 2", so that counts for a lot. The back hatch space isn't huge, but more than adequate for errands, light travel packing, grocery shopping, etc.
I routinely get slightly more than the estimated fuel economy it is rated for, both for in town driving and freeway/combined.
The ride is the biggest drawback to the Smart. Short wheelbase translates into feeling every pavement crack and chuck hole. At speed, it can be quite jarring. Also, on the freeway, tire ruts and strong winds require two hands firmly on the wheel.
The optional bluetooth system (a factory option that replaces the clock in the right dash-mounted double gauges) work seamlessly with current smart phones for phone, navigation, music, etc., better in fact, than many newer cars' systems do.
The "glass" roof in mine has the standard hazing effect these are prone to (makes the glass roof "sparkle" when looked through in certain sunlight conditions).
I use it as my daily driver for a 12 mile commute of combined local and highway roads. The car has been very reliable, cheap to operate, comfortable, and fun to drive. It makes me smile.