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Hi everyone, I bought a smart Pure on Tuesday night - great deal at 10k miles and $500 under retail KBB. This is my frist car that had less than 80k when I got it, and I'm stoked! I named him John Galt, Jr., because now that I have keyless entry I feel like I'm in the ruling class! (this is tongue in cheek I assure you)

My two questions are:

1) Is there a way to gently ::suggest:: to the car that I want to coast? It seems to engine break heavily fairly often when I let off the throttle, and it seems a waste of energy when I could otherwise just coast. Would keeping a tiny bit of pressure on the throttle accomplish this? Is there some sort of throttle-to-brake-fu that I must master? With past stick shift cars I would coast with the clutch in a lot, but I don't have the paddle shifter, and people seem very divided in another thread on whether it's even ok for the engine to move to neutral and back again while rolling.

2) I did read a long thread on this one... more divided opinions, but any thoughts on what octane of fuel to use? I like the advice to try out different ones and go with whatever the car is most efficient at.
 

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Welcome to sCOA.

1) When the engine is fully breaking the injectors are shut off and you are using no fuel, this is more efficient than coasting in neutral. You should be able to modulate the throttle to control the amount of decel.

2) I run 91 so I do not have to buy fuel with ethanol in it. If you are buying 10 gallons at a time the cost difference between 87 and 91 is so marginal, I do not understand why anyone would run a lower grade ethanol fuel in their smart.
 

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Welcome!!! :D

1) I put it into Manual Mode and put it into the highest gear it'll go. If I know I will be coming to a complete stop but in a distance that engine braking won't allow (a traffic jam, stopped train, crash, long light, etc), I'll drop it into Neutral.

2) If the manual says to use Premium, use Premium. It's not worth chancing possible later problems to save a few bucks a year...
 

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My driving style is just the opposite: I manually back shift anytime I'm coming to a stop or slowdown to; 1 save the brakes and; 2 be in the proper gear when ready to accelerate again. I'm also old school, hate to lug the smart. Other car is ALWAYS in the correct gear from 1st to 7th.
 

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I too use to downshift but after reading about the clutches wearing out I have stopped. I now use the breaks for all of my slowing needs. Easier to replace than the clutch.
 

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Welcome & congrats on purchasing a Smart!

I always use Premium/ 91 Octane and would recommend you do the same. In San Diego, it only costs roughly $1 more per fill up and that is the grade of fuel recommended by the manufacturer.
 

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1) I'd use Neutral as well to coast.
2) Use 91. You likely won't hurt the engine using 87 in an emergency unless you're driving it like a racecar... but you also won't get the same power/mileage which is not worth the few $ saved to me.
 
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