It's fun but not a car. It would definitely depend on the friend. Again - the Smart is NOT a car. Many people who've been disappointed with the Smart are comparing it to a car and I've decided that that is not what the Smart actually is. It's actually a go-cart. Gas mileage, performance, handling, comfort are equivalent to a go-cart with a nice interior and a surprising amount of clever storage space. So if you think it might be fun to drive a go-cart daily, the Smart is for you. I personally love it. I grocery shop, take long-ish trips in it, take my dogs too and from the park in it, etc etc. It's my daily driver.
Great gas mileage, little upset that it is a car that takes premium. surprisingly roomy for such a small car, doesn't exactly command respect on the road. 70 hp is 70 hp it doesn't have trouble hanging with cars with almost 3 times the engine and 10 times the hp in normal freeway conditions entrance ramps, changing lanes, passing a slower car all perfect. And while people laugh at you for driving a smart car, you get to laugh at them for filling up every 3 days. You will get your chance every two weeks when you fill up. I just wish it had a better radio
My initial misgivings were unfounded (might not be perky enough for comfortable interstate highway speeds, not high enough for practical sight-lines--both completely unfounded). It's cute and very economical to operate and because it's pretty much entirely white and shaped as it is, it resembles an enormous Storm Trooper's Helmet.
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