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Electric Cars Spark Interest During Rally In Westport

Norwalk resident Kyle Smith and Alyssa Esposito of Shelton show off the 2nd generation Smart Car they drove Saturday in Westport's first electric car rally and showcase. Photo Credit: Vanessa Inzitari
A Fisker Karma was among the more than 30 electric cars on display in Westport Saturday during the town's first-ever electric car rally and showcase. Photo Credit: Vanessa Inzitari

WESTPORT, Conn. – From Teslas to Smart Cars, more than 30 electric vehicles turned heads in Westport Saturday during the first annual Westport Electric Car Club Road Rally.

Following an approximately 40-mile rally through Westport and Fairfield, a total of 33 cars sat on display outside Westport’s Blu Parrot restaurant for the viewing pleasure of local car enthusiasts— some of whom were surprised by what they saw.

“When I think of electric cars, I think of tiny, odd-shaped cars, not this,” Stratford resident Dan Cathier said as he gazed upon the sleek and sporty Fisker Karma. “This is a very nice looking car. If I saw this on the street, I would never think it was an electric car.”

Cathier and his 12-year-old son Drew were also impressed by the numerous Teslas on display, including a Tesla Roadster and several Tesla Model Ss.

But the sporty cars weren’t the only ones getting attention. A third generation Smart Car available for test drives also wowed visitors.

“The car has a lot of torque,” said Norwalk resident Kyle Smith, who took the Smart Car for a spin. “I was not expecting that in a small car like that. It also drives very tight to the road and the steering was great.”

Having driven a friend's second-generation Smart Car in the road rally, Smith was curious to try out the newest model, which hits the market in nine states May 3.

Compared to his everyday car, a Subaru Outback, Smith said he was pleasantly surprised by how spacious the new Smart Car was.

“It felt like I was driving in a normal car,” he said. “I’m a relatively tall guy but I wasn’t cramped; I had plenty of leg room.”

Smith’s friend Alyssa Esposito — who tagged along for the test drive — said she was impressed by how quiet the Smart Car was and enjoyed how “smooth” the drive was.

“It was fun to drive around in it,” she said.

After test driving the 3rd generation Smart Car, Smith said he would definitely consider buying an electric car in the future.

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