To Smart Car or Not to Smart Car?
The notorious smart car is a divisive breed. Much like a college rivalry, the parties on opposing sides stand firm in their opinion. What we call “Smart Cars” aren’t the only thing that deviates from the norm. The Mercedes Benz born breed of vehicle is a hybrid that has come to be associated with compact and fuel-efficient.
Some argue that smart cars are modern and sleek. These little cars are the future of transportation and offer innovative technology that is keeping up with a modern society in a way that no other vehicle can boast. On the other hand, it’s really only a step above a moped.
The average weight of a standard vehicle is 4,000 pounds whereas the standard smart car is only about 1,800 pounds. These vehicles are even victims of what’s called “Smart Car Tipping”, a city-style version of cow tipping that leaves the poor things on their sides. Most of the critics of this car and those like it are deemed unsafe. Let’s be honest: A big fat truck will always feel safer.
Smart cars take roughly 13.5 seconds to reach 60 mph, while vehicles of a larger size generally take around 6 or 7 seconds. This means if the eco-friendly vehicle is on the highway, or in a situation in which high speeds are preferable, the smart car is at a great disadvantage. Although the average deaths for smart cars in the United States are lower than most standard vehicles, it is speculated that this is due to a lack of exposure in the region.
While aesthetics and safety are highly important, smart cars place an emphasis on what the industry is most concerned about. Pollution and consumption have rapidly changed the vehicle market as well as individual life. Although, there are debates about the validity of scientists that cry “global warming”, there is no arguing with a shift in societal preference.
The cost of standard vehicles on the economy and the environment is impossible to ignore. Trucks and cars contribute 25% of Co2 emissions. Other transportation methods like trains, busses, and the like contribute 12% as well. Smart cars usually have emissions of between 80-100 g/km compared to standard vehicles that give off around 170-180 g/km.
No matter the side you stand of the smart car stadium, it is an excellent example of how design can meet technology to adapt to a changing world. In the future, these cars will be fondly remembered for being tipped on city streets and being the first step in a long journey to change the world.
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