Ben Custard profile picture Ben Custard 2 months ago
News

Anger Issues And An Animated Fox On The Dashboard: Meet The 422bhp Smart #1 Brabus

Brabus has turned its hand to Smart’s new electric crossover, with incredible straight-line results

Remind me later
Smart - Anger Issues And An Animated Fox On The Dashboard: Meet The 422bhp Smart #1 Brabus - News

This angry-looking blob is the Smart #1 Brabus, and it can nearly accelerate as fast as a Lamborghini Urus. There, got your attention, didn’t we? Yes, this electric chihuahua (small but with a fighty personality) hits 0-62mph in just 3.9 seconds. That’s as fast as the BMW M4 and Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio.

The sporty Smarty’s two electric motors and four-wheel drive propel it very quickly to its 112mph limited top speed. Those motors together produce 422bhp, which is bloody loads in a car the size of a child’s shoe. Shame the Smart #1 can’t park sideways in a parallel parking bay like the original ForTwo could, but it’s a different world now. More important things going on.

Smart - Anger Issues And An Animated Fox On The Dashboard: Meet The 422bhp Smart #1 Brabus - News

You’ll recognise the Brabus not for its engine note, but for the sportier look compared to the standard Hashtag One. There are new vents between the headlights (cooling what, we’re not entirely sure), exclusive 19-inch alloys, a bigger spoiler and slices of red accenting. There are a few red bits inside, plus slightly posher materials.

It’s all nicey nice inside, until you have to use the infotainment system. And you do need to use Smart’s system, as this is one of the only cars on sale today without Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Pretty much everything is accessed through the touchscreen, from cycling through the drive modes to the HVAC controls.

Smart - Anger Issues And An Animated Fox On The Dashboard: Meet The 422bhp Smart #1 Brabus - News

It’s meant to appeal to young urbanites, but the system might be a bit too juvenile. The scattering of widgets on the homepage look like a kid’s tablet and might prove to be difficult to prod on the move. Turning on the single-pedal braking function takes a whole 10 seconds. There’s even an animated fox assistant in the corner of the screen that’s like a modern-day version of the Microsoft Word paperclip.

Range also takes a hit in the Brabus, down to 248 miles from the standard car’s 273 miles. 150kW fast-charging is at least included for out-and-about top-ups.