Yes, I had to look up the name of this car three times.
In fairness, the company says that the "tongue-in-cheek name" is referring to the car's glass roof, which "offers passengers a clear view of a starry sky or, via the video projector in the hood, [which] turns the car into a drive-in on wheels."
I have no idea what this means other than that the diminutive division of Mercedes-Benz is trying to draw attention to the newly available Smart "electric drive" vehicle (EV). The current Smart EV is said to return 122 city MPGe. Estimated driving range is "76 miles in city driving" but may go as high as 90 miles "in real world driving" on a full charge. Expect about six hours to fully charge the Smart EV from a 240-volt outlet.
But back to the movie Smart.
Powered by a 60-kilowatt magneto-electric motor, the Smart forstars is said to have 100 lb.-ft. of torque and a top speed of 80 mph. It also has lithium-ion batteries with a capacity of 17.6 kilowatt-hours of electric power.
But EV fans looking to save the world with this car should cool their green jeans: This car can be turned into your very own drive-in! All you need, according to Smart, is a flat wall for the car's built-in projector's media player (located in the hood) to show, arguably, the best car movie ever: "Bullitt" - but I'd also give props to "American Graffiti." The system is operated via Bluetooth from an iPhone. The sound system has additional speakers built into the ventilation openings behind the doors. All you're missing is the popcorn.
We weren't crazy for how our gas-powered Smart ForTwo performed in our tests; it was slow, noisy, had an awful ride and one of the worst transmissions we'd ever driven.
Perhaps the forstars version will be good at something. Of course, that "something" is being parked and projecting a movie.
The company suggests that the forstars concept, with a longer wheelbase and wider track than the current Smart ForTwo, "offers a sneak peek into the future of Smart's design direction."
Think of it as maybe a movie preview on wheels. But that would be a trailer.
The production Smart EV will go on sale this spring and retail for $25,000 - undercutting the slow-selling Nissan Leaf by around $10,000. A convertible model will also be available, for $28,000. Federal tax credits (which run up to $7,500) or state/local tax breaks may apply.
No word yet if the Smart will be featured in the sequel to "Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo" or if the Electric Light Orchestra will reunite for the soundtrack.
See our complete 2013 Detroit auto show coverage.