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Can today's widely deployed S-FSK/PLAN+ based AMR systems evolve towards a faster and more robust multicarrier technology? This paper demonstrates how multicarrier technology addressses the challenge of achieving the higher levels of performance required by today's Smart Grid. A communication speed of 10kBaud and an “ultra robust mode” feature are proposed using an `evolution, no revolution' strategy. Capitalizing on the field proven IEC61334-5-2 standard, this solution offers true backward compatibility with smart meters already installed. It eliminates the risks associated with deployment of alternative modulation techniques while reducing both Capex1 and Opex2 for the ultilities.