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Review: The Smart Roadster

February 27, 2015

From 2003 to 2005, German manufacturer Smart produced a fun two door sports car simply called the Smart Roadster. The funky little Roadster was a critical success and in its two years of production Smart managed to sell a whopping 43,000 units, including several limited edition specials. Unfortunately, due to problems with the way Smart financed the Roadster’s warranty – and a change in company direction – the Roadster’s production was halted. To this day, the Smart Roadster is an incredibly fun car to drive and we can still offer car loans for the second hand models which remain popular among those looking for affordable thrills. Today, we’re taking a closer look at this cheeky compact in our Smart Roadster review!

Smart Roadster

Original image by dave.see

Design

One look at the Smart Roadster is enough to understand why this is such a desirable car, its innovative and fun design can out-swagger the best of them. The outside design is dominated by a low roofline, gorgeous curves and a unique colour scheme. Despite being over 10 years old, the Smart Roadster’s design remains as fresh, relevant and unique as the day it was born.

The distinctive design features continue on the inside, with the Smart Roadster sporting a funky and modern interior. The Smart’s circular speedometers, that wouldn’t look out of place on a superbike, give the interior some serious petrolhead appeal. Inside and out, the Smart Roadster makes for some serious eye-candy.

Performance

While 80bhp might not sound like much, when you consider how light the little Roadster is – that power goes a long way. Weighing in at just below 800 kg, the Roadster boasts an impressive power to weight ratio.

However, read any contemporary Smart Roadster review and you’ll find that the true strength of the car is its amazing handling. The Roadster is incredibly well balanced and sports handling that could put many competitors to shame. Corners are a treat, and even at the highest speeds – the Roadster remains glued to the tarmac. On top of that, the car is extremely frugal – returning as much as 55mpg, with negligible emissions to boot, the Smart Roadster is a smart choice when it comes to running costs.

Features

Although it’s not the roomiest car in the world, the low seating arrangement ensures that the Smart Roadster can comfortably seat two. Since the production of the car halted years ago, you’ll need to go second hand if you want to get your hands on it. Luckily, even the most basic models of the Roadster came with a wealth in kit, so you’re sure to get a decent amount of luxury no matter which model you manage to track down.

Smart Roadster front

Original image by order_242

Since production came to a close in 2005, resale values have declined – meaning it’s easy to find a bargain. You can track down a second hand Smart Roadster for as little as £1,900, but you would need some extraordinary luck to do so. £3,000 will be closer to the mark for most used Roadsters in good condition. If you do manage to track down a Roadster you like, but need some help with financing it, contact the Car Loan Warehouse. We specialise in Smart finance and can help you with every step of the buying process. Check out our dedicated Smart Finance page for more information, or use our online loan calculator to get an instant quote.

About The Author

Jon Le Roux is co-founder and company director of The Car Loan Warehouse. Being a mad engineering and motorsport enthusiast, I spend more hours than is healthy, watching, reading or talking about cars, boats, motorbikes…..basically anything with an engine.