Mercedes-Benz-owned Smart has announced plans to unveil an ultra-compact plug-in electric pickup truck called the For-US at the Detroit auto show next week. The vehicle will use the same platform as a Smart car, but only seat two people and offer cargo in back. The pickup will also feature a docking station for two E-bikes in back, so the driver can charge his electric bikes while traveling to or from a ride. All we know so far is that the electric motor has 74 horsepower and 96 lb-ft of torque, equivalent to the upper end of Smart’s gas-powered engines, which is enough power to get from Point A to Point B, but definitely not the sort of pull you need to tow things.
We know that Detroit is often the place to show-case pickup trucks, and that auto shows have been getting greener with more electric drivetrains and city cars, but we’re not so sure a blue-collar, hard-working city in the grips of January winter weather is the place to get respect for a cute ute like this. We do like the idea of extending the range of an electric vehicle by using on-board bikes once you reach your city center destination, but how much does the weight of the bikes reduce the range of the electric truck?