Now a 50/50 joint venture between Daimler AG and Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, Smart Automobile unveiled the Concept # 1 electrical design study at the recent IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich.
This is a very important concept for the Smart brand, and for several reasons. First, Concept # 1 foreshadows an upcoming production crossover, the first in the company’s history.
Second, it is the first concept car of the Daimler-Geely partnership. As a result, it is also the first Smart concept car that is not based on a Daimler architecture; instead, Concept # 1 builds on Geely’s Electricity Sustainability Experience (SEA) architecture.
Now, if you like Smart Concept # 1, chances are the production version will suit your taste as well. We say this because Smart’s recent design patent filing with EUIPO reveals a pretty similar design inside and out.
At first glance, the vehicle depicted in these patents may appear almost identical to Concept # 1 (check it out in detail in the gallery and video below). However, a closer look reveals several different details like the flush door handles (the design study did not have any), the presence of B-pillars (not in the concept), the bulkier side mirror shells and the visors. -slightly different shocks.
At the front, the grille looks slightly smaller due to the addition of two pieces of air vent-like trim, while at the rear, the lower bumper insert looks bulkier and incorporates the license plate holder. In addition, the wheels appear smaller than the concept’s 21-inch rims, while sporting a different design. All in all, the proportions are more like an SUV on the Concept # 1 and more like a crossover / hatchback on the production vehicle.
In addition to the exterior design sketches, Smart also submitted several designs for the interior parts, including the dashboard, center console, controls and shift levers. They also stay true to the concept vehicle, displaying similar layouts.
Designed by Daimler and to be built by Geely in China on its SEA EV platform, Smart’s first crossover promises the “the highest level of dynamic handling,Long-range, fast-charging technology, a next-generation infotainment system hosted on a 12.8-inch touchscreen and live updates.
Similar in size to a MINI Countryman, the yet-unnamed Smart crossover is expected to go on sale in China in 2022 and later in Europe.