Smart ForFour EQ review

Category: Electric car

Section: Costs & verdict

Available fuel types:electric, petrol
Available colours:
Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD badge detail
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  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD press tracking
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD press rear tracking
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD press dashboard
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD press rear seats
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD badge detail
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD rear right tracking
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD front right static
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD rear left static
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD instruments detail
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD charge dial detail
  • Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD rear lights
RRP £12,755What Car? Target Price from£11,302

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

An entry-level ForFour will cost you more than the equivalent Skoda Citigo e iV, while the bigger Renault Zoe is a pricier car altogether. When comparing the list prices of various competitors, do make sure the prices are equivalent – i.e. all are either including or excluding the government grant – because this can make things very confusing. 

What about charging times the ForFour EQ? It can charge at up to 22kW from a commercial charging point, which will take the battery from 10% to 80% in 40mins. From a home wallbox you're looking at 3.5hrs to do the same charge, or 8.5hrs from a standard three-pin plug. 

We'd suggest sticking with the entry-level Passion Advanced trim, which offer the best value for money. It comes with LED rear lights, 15in alloy wheels, a leather-wrapped gearlever/ steering wheel, electric door mirrors, electric windows and the infotainment features and parking sensors we've already described. Higher trim levels add mod-cons including leather trim and heated front seats, but push the price near to the realms of better propositions, like the Renault Zoe. 

The ForFour isn’t rated as highly by Euro NCAP for its safety as the Renault Zoe. It was tested back in 2014 and received a four-star rating, compared with the Zoe’s five stars. The Volkswagen e-Up received only 3 stars overall, although that was under far more stringent tests that were carried out in 2019. The good thing is that all Smart ForFours come with automatic emergency braking (AEB) as standard.

The standard warranty is three-years with no mileage limit, while the Citigo e iV's is the same length but with the mileage capped at 60,000. A Renault Zoe's warranty is five years or 100,000 miles. The ForFour EQ, like the Zoe, comes with an eight-year battery warranty, but here the ForFour's cover ends is at 62,000 miles, while the Zoe's remains at 100,000 miles.

Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD badge detail
Smart ForFour EQ 2020 LHD press tracking
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Overview

The Smart Forfour has undoubted plus points. For a start it's one of the least expensive electric cars on sale to buy outright, undercutting both the Renault Zoe (if you don’t lease the battery) and the VW e-Up. It's also zippy and easy to drive in town, thanks in part to its super-tight turning circle, and it's pretty well equipped, too. However, it's not all rosey. The ride and handling aren't very good, the boot is tiny, there's not a vast amount of space inside, but worst of all for an electric car, the range is very poor next to its best rivals. Unless you literally need an electric car solely for town, the range issue is the biggest reason that we’d suggest going for the Renault Zoe instead.

  • Cheap to buy outright
  • Tight turning circle
  • Relatively well equipped
  • Poor range
  • small boot
  • Bouncy ride and iffy handling

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