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Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
Two significantly similar cars, no doubt about that. Still, each one has something different to offer. Having both cars powered by petrol engines and utilizing the 3-door hatchback body style within the same 'Micro car' segment, the only major difference here really is their wheel drive configuration (front for the Ford and rear in the case of the Smart). The first one has a Ford-engineered powertrain under the hood, a 4-cylinder, 8-valves 50hp unit, while the other one gets its power and torque from a 3-cylinder, 6-valves 45hp engine designed by Smart.Safety
Both vehicles got tested by European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP), with the same number of safety stars gained in the process. Still, apart from the official crash test results there are other things we need to be aware of. Both vehicles belong to the micro car segment, which is generally a misfortune safety-wise, but it doesn't do much to help us decide between the two. Furthermore, taking kerb weight as an important factor into account, the American car offers a considerable difference of 18% more metal.Reliability
I don't like generalizing things when it comes to reliability, although it does seem that both brands display similar results in faults and breakdowns, all the models observed together. That's the official data, while our visitors describe reliability of Ford with an average rating of 4.4, and models under the Smart badge with 3.9 out of 5. Independent research findings rank Ka as average reliability-wise, and City-Coupe is more or less at the same level.We should definitely mention that owners of cars with the same powertrain as the American car rank it on average as 3.0 out of 5, exactly the same as the other one.Performance & Fuel economy
Ford is undoubtly more agile, reaching 100km/h in 1.2 seconds less than its competitor. In addition to that it accelerates all the way to 147 kilometers per hour, 12km/h more than the other car. When it comes to fuel economy the winner has to be the German car, averaging around 4.9 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (58 mpg), in combined cycle. We can't ignore that 20% difference compared to the American car.
Ford appears just a bit more reliable, although the difference is truly marginal. The most important thing when deciding between any two vehicles should always be safety, both passive and active. In my opinion, everything taken into account, the American car offers significantly better overall protection, taking the lead here. It all continues in the same direction, with Ford being considerably quicker, thus putting more smile on driver's face. It does come at a cost though, and that's the fuel consumption... It's really tough to make a final decision here, but if I'd need to, I'd say Ford. In any case that's my personal view, built upon all the data available to me. What should decide here though is the way you feel about the two vehicles, and I hope you'll find my guidelines useful in the process. Also, you could use the oportunity to find out which car, everything taken into account, would be the perfect choice for you in the eyes of the virtual adviser™, out of 12.000+ vehicles we currently have in our database.