It’s called the smart for-us, and it’s a tongue-in-cheek take on what an urban pickup should really look like. The tiny tot, which debuted in Detroit, measures in at 3.54 metres long, 1.5 metres wide and 1.7 metres tall, making it an absolute dwarf compared to a typical American pickup.

The concept EV’s drive system is based on the smart fortwo electric drive’s, with a 55 kW magneto-electric motor being provided juice by a 17.6 kWh lithium-ion battery. Performance specs include 130 Nm of torque and a 120 km/h top speed.

Design-wise, the for-us exterior features convex and, as the company puts it, sensuously shaped body surfaces. The large brand emblem is proudly sported on the grille, and the front has a pronounced three-dimensional design with an under-ride guard finishing off the lower part of the front end.

At 2.48 metres long, the wheelbase is 613 mm more than the fortwo’s, and the track has also been widened by 50 mm on each side to help emphasise the robust look of the study. At the same time the extremely short overhangs at the front and rear make it exceedingly compact.

The tailboard at the rear of the smart for-us is electrically driven. When it opens, the cargo floor – including tailboard – retracts by 280 mm, and then the tailgate slides down in a parallel position, allowing easy access to the load on the 900 mm cargo area.

Inside, the for-us features sleek, taut surfaces in mother-of-pearl white, with its technical functional elements finished in brushed aluminum to provide contrast. Meanwhile, the seat shells, which are open in the middle, are covered with a soft yellow fabric throw, giving them a hammock-like seating feel.

Rather smartly, in place of a conventional rear-view mirror, the smart for-us features a smartphone accommodated in a holder on top of the instrument panel support, allowing the driver to see what’s happening on the road behind with the help of an integrated video camera.