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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've been putting more miles than usual on my car lately, due to a seasonal job. 80 miles roundtrip, stop and go traffic.

The other night on my way home from work my 2013 Gas Smart Fortwo (35k miles), check engine light came on while driving on the freeway. My car immediately lost acceleration and the gas pedal was useless. Luckily I was able to pull over to the side of the road and call AAA.

I ran a code reader and the codes P0300, P0302, and P0303 popped up. AKA - Cylinder 1 - 3 misfires. And then finally P050B - which I think also relates to the cylinder misfires?

I called a mechanic friend in the morning and he told me it was probably my ignition coils. I told him that I replaced my spark plugs about 5K miles ago, (at 30K miles), but not my coils. He told me he believes my spark plugs malfunctioned and now my coils have to be replaced too. That they should always be replaced together.

He recommended I go with dealership coils, but after getting a quote from Mercedes for $1000 for 3 coils, I knew my wallet wasn't going to let that happen. Instead I found the High Performance pack from Smart Madness for $200 for all 3.

Has anyone had this problem before? He doesn't usually work on Smarts, so I wanted to get a second opinion before I buy new coils and spark plugs. Also, are the Smart Madness coils any good?

Not sure if this is worth mentioning, but based on a few other threads I read - I did fill up my car with $15 worth of gas that day. I drove to work 40 miles with no problem, and then on the way back home, after driving 20 miles is when the engine light turned on. Bad gas? It was from Shell. I always use that station and put 91 gas in.

Thanks!
 

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I've been putting more miles than usual on my car lately, due to a seasonal job. 80 miles roundtrip, stop and go traffic.

The other night on my way home from work my 2013 Gas Smart Fortwo (35k miles), check engine light came on while driving on the freeway. My car immediately lost acceleration and the gas pedal was useless. Luckily I was able to pull over to the side of the road and call AAA.

I ran a code reader and the codes P0300, P0302, and P0303 popped up. AKA - Cylinder 1 - 3 misfires. And then finally P050B - which I think also relates to the cylinder misfires?

I called a mechanic friend in the morning and he told me it was probably my ignition coils. I told him that I replaced my spark plugs about 5K miles ago, (at 30K miles), but not my coils. He told me he believes my spark plugs malfunctioned and now my coils have to be replaced too. That they should always be replaced together.

He recommended I go with dealership coils, but after getting a quote from Mercedes for $1000 for 3 coils, I knew my wallet wasn't going to let that happen. Instead I found the High Performance pack from Smart Madness for $200 for all 3.

Has anyone had this problem before? He doesn't usually work on Smarts, so I wanted to get a second opinion before I buy new coils and spark plugs. Also, are the Smart Madness coils any good?

Not sure if this is worth mentioning, but based on a few other threads I read - I did fill up my car with $15 worth of gas that day. I drove to work 40 miles with no problem, and then on the way back home, after driving 20 miles is when the engine light turned on. Bad gas? It was from Shell. I always use that station and put 91 gas in.

Thanks!
Could be bad gas.
Coils usually don't go bad suddenly and not all 3 at once. Maybe a loose ground. Other loose or corroded connection. Bad crankshaft position sensor also a possibility.
What plugs did you go with. If double check those as well
From what I've heard smart madness coils work fine but I've also heard that they don't last was long as the oem
 

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It's highly unlikely all 3 coils went bad at the same time. My smart has 210K+ miles on it, and I'm still running the original coils.

I would suspect bad gas first, especially that soon after a fill-up. Go get a bottle of Heat fuel treatment, and dump it in your tank and see if that takes care of it first.
 

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I don't change coils when I change plugs, does anyone? Do any manufacturers even recommend it?
Others have said it and I'll repeat it, it is very unlikely for 3 coils to suddenly fail without some other fault precipitating it.
Any recent maintenance that could have affected things?

Hate to say it, but I'd also consider finding a new mechanic.
 

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I'd suggest that you do a leak down compression check to see the numbers of each of the three cyls. MB checked my 2008 Pure upon my complaint ($140.00) and I found out that my cyl # 2 was almost half of the other two. Driving the car during that time caused all 300, 301, 302 and 303 codes to come up....
 

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Discussion Starter #6
When you did the compression check and found out it was cylinder 2, what was the fix for that? And more importantly was the fix, expensive?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'd suggest that you do a leak down compression check to see the numbers of each of the three cyls. MB checked my 2008 Pure upon my complaint ($140.00) and I found out that my cyl # 2 was almost half of the other two. Driving the car during that time caused all 300, 301, 302 and 303 codes to come up....
When you did the compression check and found out it was cylinder 2, what was the fix for that? And more importantly was the fix, expensive?
 

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I didn't pursue the matter further. I just went ahead and bought another engine for my Pure. LOng story short: Both car and engine are still waiting to be mated. Meantime, I just went ahead and bought another smartie, and then another, and then another.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It's highly unlikely all 3 coils went bad at the same time. My smart has 210K+ miles on it, and I'm still running the original coils.

I would suspect bad gas first, especially that soon after a fill-up. Go get a bottle of Heat fuel treatment, and dump it in your tank and see if that takes care of it first.
I'm hoping its just bad gas. I wasn't on empty when I put the new gas in. Maybe had about 3 gallons left, then added an additional 3 so I wouldn't have to gas up on my way home. I'm guessing I was able to make it to work no problem, because I was running off the previous 3 gallons of gas I already had in my car, and then on the way home is when the new gas started to hit.

Just to make sure I'm buying the correct additive, its the ISO-HEET 28202 Premium Fuel-line Antifreeze Water Remover and Injector Cleaner, correct? Whats the best process for using this? Dump the whole thing (or just half a bottle?) in my tank at the gas station, prior to filling up, then top off with new gas and drive around a bit? Thanks!
 

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That should be the right stuff. I'd dump the whole bottle in. A little extra won't hurt anything. Hopefully that fixes your issue.
 

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If the Heat doesn't fix it, you may be looking at a more involved repair. My Dad bought a smart with a known P303 fault. Ended up being burnt valves on cylinder #3, and a scored cylinder. Possibly from debris from the burnt valves. He found a good used engine from a yard in Indy that only had 22K miles on it. We swapped it out, and it's ran great since.

The biggest issue I see with these engines is people babying them. That little Mitsubishi engine is about 1 generation removed from a motorcycle engine. They love to rev. The factory shift programming short shifts in an attempt to get better mileage, and it lugs the motor. That lugging causes significantly elevated exhaust valve temperatures. Which leads to burn valves over time.
With 210K+ on my smart, I still drive it like I stole it, and it still get 36+ mpg, and runs great. I have never broken a seal on that engine to do any kind of repair. Oil changes every 5K, and just keep driving it.
Best car I have ever owned...
 

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If the Heat doesn't fix it, y.... My Dad bought a smart with a known P303 fault. Ended up being burnt valves on cylinder #3, and a scored cylinder.
.. The factory shift programming short shifts in an attempt to get better mileage, and it lugs the motor. That lugging causes significantly elevated exhaust valve temperatures. Which leads to burn valves over time.
With 210K+ on my smart, I still drive it like I stole it, and it still get 36+ mpg, and runs great. I have never broken a seal on that engine to do any kind of repair. Oil changes every 5K, and just keep driving it.
Best car I have ever owned...
Using my obd gauge package, I found that manually shifting at around 3500rpm keeps the engine load at under 75%. And keeps the cylinder head temps down, I also get 36mpg, which is right where it should be.
I would like to find a correlation between low rpm shifts and non-premium gas being use in order to save pennies.
 

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Watching my OBD guages, my smart seldom ever goes over 180° while running down the road.it runs on average in the 175-178° range.

I don't recommend keeping the rpm's down due to valve burning issues. These engine lug as low as 2300 rpm, which is higher than most cars run down the highway these days. Shoot, my Dodge Journey at 60 mph, is only turning about 1700 rpm!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
So an update: I bought some Heet today, put it in my tank, and topped my Smart off with some fresh gas (about 3 gallons). I drove around for about 10 minutes. It felt a bit better, but my check engine light went from solid to flashing again. So I got nervous it would break down in the Los Angeles streets, and pulled back in to my parking garage.

I'm gonna let it sit till tomorrow and see if anything change. Do I have to burn the old gas off before seeing a difference, or should it happen fairly fast? Not sure how much time I should give it, before I try out something else.

I think I may by some lightly used coils and new OEM spark plugs and change those out to see if that'll fix it.
Or would this be a waste of time, since its a misfire on all 3 cylinders?
 

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The odds of all 3 coil packs going at once are all but of unheard of! Not saying it couldn't happen but????
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The odds of all 3 coil packs going at once are all but of unheard of! Not saying it couldn't happen but????
Do you think it could be my Spark plugs then? Maybe a bad pack or just gapped wrong?
I installed them 3 months ago myself, with no problems until recently. They all came from the same pack, that I bought new on eBay. They were the - DENSO IRIDIUM POWER Spark Plugs IXUH22 5353

I'm just trying rule out the cheaper solutions first.

I tried the dollar bill test yesterday on my exhaust to check for an engine compression problem/burnt valve. Basically you put a piece of paper over the exhaust and see if it sucks it it in or blows it out. It blew it out completely with so much force. Not sure if this means anything, or if its even accurate, but I've seen people rave about this test to do a quick diagnostics with not tools, so I figured I would just try it. Who knows tho.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
You can throw parts at it or get a compression check done and get a definitive answer. :)
I think I'll have to this week, haha. I'm just nervous about the thought of it failing the compression test, and what comes after that. Would that require a whole new engine? Sorry for all the questions. I just bought my first home in LA two weeks ago, and of course I'm dealing with car troubles after the biggest purchase of my life and a very drained bank account haha.
 

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Try to find the real reason for the codes. You can still drive the car until it dies. If it's established that a new engine is needed, just save up to that $2K that you might need for that inevitable engine.
I drove my 08 pure that I bought new with the P0302 code for about 30,000 miles (4 more years) before I finally decided it's done. By that time, it was smelling rotten eggs. I untagged and parked it when I got fixer-upper Chewawa from forummer Unicycle. I also got another motor (2010, 46,000 miles) for my Pure later that year but Chewawa was running good enough for me not to bother.

Good luck!
 
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