Parkers overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 3.5

Only one engine is available in the Smart Roadster Coupe – a three-cylinder 698cc petrol engine with a turbocharger. It delivers a modest 80bhp in standard form which is enough to give it a respectable 0-62mph time of 11.2 seconds (slightly slower than the Roadster) and a top speed of 113mph. It’s a very characterful engine and there’s a distinctive tweet from the turbo when accelerating or changing gear.

In everyday driving it certainly feels quicker than the figures suggest, helped by a very light kerb weight of little more than 800kg – around half that of a Ford Mondeo. Despite a lack of pulling power, it’s surprisingly nippy when pulling in gear too and will happily keep up with fast flowing motorway traffic. Economy is very impressive with an average of 55mpg achievable.

A dealer-fit engine upgrade is available (on both new and older models) which lifts power to 90bhp while a limited run of early models used a 60bhp engine – not really enough to be genuinely sporty. All models come with a sequential automatic gearbox as standard. It takes some getting used to and can feel rather jerky, especially in automatic mode but a lift of the throttle when changing gear eases this.

You can change gears yourself, either via the gearshift or with optional paddleshifts on the steering wheel. This is much more enjoyable, although the Smart doesn’t hold revs and will automatically change up, which means overtaking requires plenty of forward planning. A performance Brabus version is also available with 101bhp which is considerably quicker and looks much sportier too.

Thanks to the extra power this manages the 0-62mph sprint in 9.8 seconds while economy is still 53mpg.

Thanks to a very low centre of gravity and wide track, the Roadster Coupe is superb in corners with pretty much no body roll. The engine is actually situated behind the driver and the Smart is rear wheel drive, which means it’s impressive in corners with plenty of grip. This configuration can traditionally be a bit of a handful, however the relative lack of power and standard fit stability control system contribute means it’s never unruly and there’s always excellent traction.

The electric steering is a bit of a letdown as it’s very light, but it does weight up at speed and offers decent feel, although the steering wheel seems too large for such a small car. Around town the Roadster Coupe is easy to drive and ideal for nipping in and out of traffic, although the turning circle isn’t as tight as the Smart Fortwo.