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Smart gets smarter

Smart starts production on its hybrid Smart ForTwo city car on October 15.

Side view of the Smart ForTwo Micro-Hybrid
Click here to see photos of the Smart ForTwo Micro-Hybrid Smart

On October 15, Smart starts production of its new Micro-Hybrid. This very mild hybrid car is based on the ForTwo city car. The hybrid system merely stops the gas engine when the car is stopped in traffic, then starts it up again when the driver releases the brake. Smart estimates it will get 13 percent better fuel economy than the standard ForTwo, which works out to about five additional miles per gallon. Very heavy traffic will increase the savings. While the ForTwo is slated to be sold in the U.S. early next year, Smart hasn't said whether it will bring the Micro-Hybrid here.

Check out photos of the Smart ForTwo Micro-Hybrid.