Set to arrive here next spring, the 2013 smart fortwo electric drive is set to become the least costly EV in the country. The coupe version of this diminutive 2-seater will sticker at $25,000 while the cabriolet will command $28,000, although both of those figures are before the $7,500 federal tax credit and any additional state and local incentives/rebates are factored into the mix. Unlike its predecessors that were lease-only offerings, this new Gen III model will be available for purchase through local smart dealers.

Both versions of the 2013 smart fortwo electric drive will be fitted with the same zero-emissions drivetrain. A new motor designed by EM-Motive, a Daimler-Bosch joint venture, develops 47 continuous and 74 peak horsepower drives the rear wheels. It can take the new smart fortwo electric drive from 0-60 mph in under 12.0 seconds and gives it a top speed of 78 mph. The motor is energized by an equally new 17.6kWh lithium-ion battery supplied by Deutsche ACCUmotive, another Daimler JV operation with Evonik Industries. Positioned beneath the car's floor, it's expected to let this new smart EV travel nearly 90 miles on a single charge under optimum conditions.

The smart fortwo electric drive's sophisticated battery management system can accommodate a variety of replenishment formats, from a basic 110-120V outlet (eight hours) to a dedicated 220-240V charger (six hours for a full recharge, three and a half for a 20-80 percent electronic refill). Like the model it replaces, the newest and greenest smart also features unique EV-centric gauges, a dedicated smartphone app that allows for remote control and monitoring of various functions and utilizes a highly-efficient regenerative braking system to help extend miles traveled between plug-in sessions. 

For more information and to pre-register for a test drive in one of the new 2013 smart fortwo electric drive models, click here.

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