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I've had my '09 smart for almost 6 years an apparently I've been starting it wrong by turning the key and holding it until it starts..
The hesitation I'm referring to is not the hesitation before it cranks, but lately, every once in awhile it'll crank once, then hesitate like it's not gonna start, then crank and start... Yesterday I turned the key, it cranked once then stopped for several seconds.. then when I let go of the key, it cranked and started.. At first I was beginning to suspect battery, but might it be something else, like in programming maybe? Car has 131K miles, has never been in the shop except for AC... Car had 39K on it when i bought it. I suspect the battery is the original, as I have not replace it. Up to this point the car has been fantastic, but this starting thing has me concerned. I have no problem replacing the battery, but I'm concerned that that might not be the problem..
I have some major health concerns and this car has got to get me back and forth. I'd hate for it to not start... especially if it's when my wife is taking me somewhere or coming to pick me up...
 

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I would bet it's the battery. My 2012 451 with 120k does this sometimes when it's really cold out. The age of the battery and miles on the car will have a lot to do with it. And with your car being about 8 years old, your battery is probably getting towards the end of its useful life.
 
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