Towing 2016 5-speed all four down - Smart Car Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-22-2019, 09:11 AM Thread Starter
 
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Towing 2016 5-speed all four down

Hi
Does anyone know if towing 5-speed manual 2016 Smart can be safely done with the engine idling?
Just curious if the transmission lubrication pump will protect the transmission if the engine is on, and the car is towed behind our motorhome with the tranny in Neutral.
Thanks in advance...
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-22-2019, 04:45 PM
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Wouldn't engine overheating be a concern? It seems hours of idling and being towed behind the motorhome with little airflow to the smart would cause some issues.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 05:43 PM
 
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You would want the car in 'Neutral'. Car OFF. Battery disconnected (or install a battery 'cut off' switch). Use two bungee cords from the bottom of the steering wheel and attach to each side of the seat rails... This will center the car around corners...
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-23-2019, 08:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NW453 View Post
You would want the car in 'Neutral'. Car OFF. Battery disconnected (or install a battery 'cut off' switch). Use two bungee cords from the bottom of the steering wheel and attach to each side of the seat rails... This will center the car around corners...
453 smart is not to be towed more than 30 miles wheels down. Yes that's for the true stick shift, not the DCT.

Last edited by Jo e Lefors; 02-24-2019 at 03:37 PM.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-24-2019, 10:15 AM
 
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We tow our 2017 ICE 453 with DCT all four down all over the place following the procedures in the manual:
https://www.smartcarofamerica.com/fo...ctions-126105/

It is a little odd that tow mode is in 6th gear rather than neutral but that's what the instructions say and it works. No bungee cord, just follow the instructions carefully, hook up the tow bar and go. I'm still trying to figure out how to lock the doors when the battery is disconnected. I don't keep anything of value in the car when towing and the pins in my tow bar have locks so nobody is going to be able to easily disconnect it and drive off. I'm more worried someone will get in and mess with the shifter thus taking it out of tow mode without me knowing it which would be a disaster...

Currently using a Blue Ox base plate, tail light diodes and ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/braking system.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-24-2019, 10:29 AM
 
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Just a follow up, many people still don't know that the 453 DCT CAN be flat towed at freeway speeds over long distances. When I took mine to the local smart center the service guys saw the tow setup and started freaking out, said the car can't be flat towed, that I would fry the transmission, etc.. When I showed them the pages from the owner's manual supplement they said Oh, I guess you can but be sure to follow each step EXACTLY as described.

I know many people don't want to disconnect the battery but you really need to. Not doing so could cause the ABS or ESP to engage when you don't want it to and cause major issues for you. The only thing I lose when disconnecting the battery is the clocks have to be re-set and the radio pre-sets are lost. I don't use the radio pre-sets as we travel extensively with the car so they are always wrong anyway I turned off the clock display in the radio and the clocks in the dash are easy to re-set using the steering wheel controls.

The only issue I've had is the braking system I use requires a cable that runs from the tow bar to the brake pedal. When the car pushes against the tow bar a surge brake engages and pulls the cable applying the brakes in the smart. When I first installed the cable I pulled it slightly snug which is what the manufacturer's instructions said to do. After driving the car for about a week it went into limp mode on me. Apparently the ABS sensor on the brake pedal is very sensitive and the car thought I was driving around with the brakes on so shut down on me. After adjusting the freeplay in the cable a little and clearing out the codes the ABS was happy again and I haven't had a problem since.
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Last edited by Richnjohn; 02-24-2019 at 10:30 AM. Reason: typo
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