Smart Car of America Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone heard of the 453’s having fuel tank capacity issues? The car is said to be able to hold 8.7 to 9.2 gallons of gas, but my car holds LESS then 7 gallons of gas, more like 6.3 gallons. I’m having to fuel up like every week. Do you think the Smart Dealership could check out my fuel capacity?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,471 Posts
There is nothing wrong with your fuel tank. It has a reserve fuel capacity to keep the in tank fuel pump adequately cooled.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,384 Posts
Here was the final word from the smart USA and the dealerships:

Well, just had my Dealership update the update. In response to my questions 'what is the actual capacity of the tank'. My dealer called TAS and there was some misunderstanding. ''The tank is NOT SMALLER. It's the reservoir that is bigger than indicated by the owner's manual and instrument cluster due to North American Emissions Spec. North American smart vehicles should have approximately 11 liters reservoir (approximately 2.9 gallons). They went on to say that it is at customers own risk if they choose to try and put this theory to test"

SO THERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS.... Who is going to give this theory a try. I for one think this is the ONE AND ONLY logical explanation to what we've all been experiencing. I'm just going to view the 'low fuel warning' as a 'suggestion' and when the reserve drops down to 0 liters, I will then 'consider filling up my tank!
TL;DR - The Owner’s Manual and smart USA’s site says the reserve is 1.3 gallons, however the dealerships and smart’s engineers say it’s actually 2.9 gallons. Approx 33% of the tank is all reserve.

At first, smart USA/dealerships said that they were going to correct the Owner’s Manuals and the calibration of the fuel gauges to reflect this resolution...That never happened. Instead they just discontinued the ICE 453 entirely.

As 453s show up on the secondhand market more and more people are going to discover that the fuel tank does not work as advertised in the Owner’s Manual.

That said, I’m very happy with my 453. It doesn’t get a whole ton of miles so the size of the tank is hardly a bother. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
Here was the final word from the smart USA and the dealerships: The Owner’s Manual and smart USA’s site says the reserve is 1.3 gallons, however the dealerships and smart’s engineers say it’s actually 2.9 gallons. Approx 33% of the tank is all reserve.
Do I understand you correctly Miss Mercedes? If my gauge indicates my reserve tank empty, then there remains 1.6 gallons in the tank? I usually get about 315 miles on a tank of gas. This suggests I can get an additional 60 miles or so more?

If I understand this correctly, has anyone tested this?
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,384 Posts
You understand that correctly (or at least, that’s how I understand the final word from TAS)...

Some people have gone past 0.0 with mixed results. Looks like the fuel pump wants a good portion of that remaining 1.6 for lubrication. And all this assumes that the gauge is accurate to begin with, and that seems to vary between cars.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,384 Posts
Wish someone would do that with a 453 tank :) That would give a lot of guidance!
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,384 Posts
Well, I certainly don't have the place anymore. :) I basically gave the house to my brother. I had to move out for my own safety...that'll be the last time I try to help someone out by letting them live with me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
Here was the final word from the smart USA and the dealerships:

TL;DR - The Owner’s Manual and smart USA’s site says the reserve is 1.3 gallons, however the dealerships and smart’s engineers say it’s actually 2.9 gallons. Approx 33% of the tank is all reserve.

At first, smart USA/dealerships said that they were going to correct the Owner’s Manuals and the calibration of the fuel gauges to reflect this resolution...That never happened. Instead they just discontinued the ICE 453 entirely.

I've been daily driving a 453 Edition #1 and never saw the low fuel light until today.
The dash 'dings' and that one bar blinks and on the bottom right corner it pops up 1.3 gallons.


This happened just as I was getting on the highway on the way to the gas station 15 miles away that has E0 91.
I get to the pump and the bottom right corner says 1.0 gallons.


Well, good time for a test - I fast filled it until it clicked off at about 7 gallons.
Then I slow filled it right to the flap; even had an ounce dribble to the larger metal area where the gas cap screws in but not enough to spill down the side of the car :D
Got 10.7 gallons in, with the low fuel indicator saying I had 1.0 gallons left.


So the capacity is there - just be patient with the slow filling.
From now on, I'm going to let the low fuel light come on and then pump in 10 gallons.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Do I understand you correctly Miss Mercedes? If my gauge indicates my reserve tank empty, then there remains 1.6 gallons in the tank? I usually get about 315 miles on a tank of gas. This suggests I can get an additional 60 miles or so more?

If I understand this correctly, has anyone tested this?
315 miles on a tank of fuel? I have never got that with mine. But 7ish gallons fill it up too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
To answer this thread 453 Fuel Tank Capacity is probably around 11 gallons.


So look at your third screen (if you reset it when you filled up) and it will tell you the 'tank' mpg.


The fuel gauge is not really accurate at the Full mark - look at this picture:





139 miles and still 'full'. From the 'tank' mpg I should have used 3.85 gallons already...


36/37 mpg for 11 gallons is 400 miles per tank.


At the bottom right in the black area to the right of the Full mark it pops up '1.3g' right when the car dings and the low fuel light (a blinking one bar on the left).


I did a test when the low fuel indicator was on and it read 1.0g at the far right (see post above).
I got 10.7 gallons in, but that was with a full filler neck too.
The picture is from the same tank, and again the fast fill clicked off at around 7 gallons, but slow filling, I was able to get over 3 gallons more in.


The fuel has to displace air and it really takes patience to get 3 gallons from click off.
Think 'pee stream' :)


As mentioned in the above post, I'm going to wait until the low fuel light is blinking and it reads '1.0 g' at the bottom right to see if the 10.2 gallons of E0 91 I have in two 5gal gas cans fit.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,384 Posts
If I fill my 453 at the pump's slowest setting when the tank is at 0.0 gallons, I will only be able to put in 7-7.5 gallons. That's irrelevant, anyway. Word on the street (okay, on Facebook lol) is that there's a service bulletin out for the 453. They've finally figured out a fix for those of us who cannot pump the advertised 8.7. :)

Side-note: Some people have been able to fit as much as 13 gallons into the 453's tank, so your findings probably aren't very conclusive. Something tells me that either not all of these cars were fitted with the same size tanks or that the size of the tanks can greatly vary due to external variables like temperature.
 
  • Like
Reactions: amosd70

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
I'm glad folks are able to post their experiences. So far, my fillups usually start with an indicated one gallon left. I get about 6-6.5 gallons into the tank until cutoff. I can squeeze a bit more to get 7 gallons. I suppose I could go further, but California has vapor recovery systems on their fuel nozzles, so it's a bit tedious to squeeze a little more.

I'm still uncertain as to the whether it's just air in tank or the tank has more than one gallon. I've also read about a potential problem damaging the fuel cannister if filled too far. I'm not sure if that's an issue or not. I am tempted to do the "bring a gas can" thing and run the car out of gas just to see how much fuel is left.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
28,831 Posts
Just to muddy the waters even more, way back at the 2014 Paris Auto Show there was a reference in the 453 handout to "an optional fuel tank capacity of 35 liters" - about 9.25 US gallons. Not sure whatever happened with that or if it ever made it to production cars....:shrug:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
More test results (continuation from 3 posts above)


My Low Fuel Light indicated 0.6g remaining - 397 miles on the same tank.


I was able to pour in the Two '5 gal' gas cans - each had 5.1gal - total of 10.2 gal added.


** 0.6 + 10.2 = 10.8 gal with still some room in the filler neck **


I did notice (and hear) slow escaping of air out of the filler neck (sounds like a low hiss like a hot pot heating up) and had to pause filling until the sound went away. You probably wouldn't hear it at a gas station - I was in a quiet neighborhood in the driveway on a windless day.
Also, my gas cans have 5/8" necks, allowing a little extra space for air to displace than the standard gas station neck.


I stand by my testing - 453 fuel capacity is around 11 gallons; or around 400 miles a tank at 36 mpg :nerd:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
I'm glad folks are able to post their experiences. So far, my fillups usually start with an indicated one gallon left. I get about 6-6.5 gallons into the tank until cutoff. I can squeeze a bit more to get 7 gallons. I suppose I could go further, but California has vapor recovery systems on their fuel nozzles, so it's a bit tedious to squeeze a little more.

I'm still uncertain as to the whether it's just air in tank or the tank has more than one gallon. I've also read about a potential problem damaging the fuel cannister if filled too far. I'm not sure if that's an issue or not. I am tempted to do the "bring a gas can" thing and run the car out of gas just to see how much fuel is left.
After the initial shut off, I hold the vapor recovery system open by hand and insert the nozzle just past the opening, filling very slowly and can always get 5 gallons more past shut off.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top