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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone!

My name is Mike, and I'm a Network Engineer.... I'm starting a new job next week for a large IT consulting firm here in Little Rock, which will require me to drive all over the city for many clients. So yes - mostly just city driving...

Currently, I have a 2-seater limited edition Spyder convertible which is costly to operate and NOT practical at all! My other vehicle is a 4-door GMC full-size truck which again is VERY impractical for driving all over the city and sucks up fuel like water.

So - then I fell in love with the Smart. I found the perfect one too - bright red with silver trim, a 2013, loaded with every option under the sun (gps, power everything) so I am really looking forward to it!

I had to do everything long distance - purchasing, signing docs, everything - via email. The Smart dealer made it pretty easy and they were exceptionally friendly and pleasant. The dealer is located near St. Louis, about a 6-hour drive from here.

Well - I finished the purchase and I am getting ready to go for a weekend overnight trip to pick up this car. I figured I would go up with the truck, and rent a uHaul flat bed car hauler, and bring it back that way.

HERE IS THE PANIC - after arranging all of this, I finally had a light bulb go off in my head! SERVICE!!! Wow - I can't believe I overlooked this. WHERE would I get this car serviced under warranty if anything happened!

So, I started calling around and can't find service ANYWHERE - and the closest dealer that will service it is in Tulsa, Oklahoma about 4.5 hours away!!!!

Wow - I hope someone out there has addressed this issue. I am very excited about my new Smart, but I am stressing about it now too. Any insight or ideas I can get would be very much appreciated!

Thanks very much, and I hope you're all having a great day!

Mike
 

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Hello everyone!

My name is Mike, and I'm a Network Engineer.... I'm starting a new job next week for a large IT consulting firm here in Little Rock, which will require me to drive all over the city for many clients. So yes - mostly just city driving...

Currently, I have a 2-seater limited edition Spyder convertible which is costly to operate and NOT practical at all! My other vehicle is a 4-door GMC full-size truck which again is VERY impractical for driving all over the city and sucks up fuel like water.

So - then I fell in love with the Smart. I found the perfect one too - bright red with silver trim, a 2013, loaded with every option under the sun (gps, power everything) so I am really looking forward to it!

I had to do everything long distance - purchasing, signing docs, everything - via email. The Smart dealer made it pretty easy and they were exceptionally friendly and pleasant. The dealer is located near St. Louis, about a 6-hour drive from here.

Well - I finished the purchase and I am getting ready to go for a weekend overnight trip to pick up this car. I figured I would go up with the truck, and rent a uHaul flat bed car hauler, and bring it back that way.

HERE IS THE PANIC - after arranging all of this, I finally had a light bulb go off in my head! SERVICE!!! Wow - I can't believe I overlooked this. WHERE would I get this car serviced under warranty if anything happened!

So, I started calling around and can't find service ANYWHERE - and the closest dealer that will service it is in Tulsa, Oklahoma about 4.5 hours away!!!!

Wow - I hope someone out there has addressed this issue. I am very excited about my new Smart, but I am stressing about it now too. Any insight or ideas I can get would be very much appreciated!

Thanks very much, and I hope you're all having a great day!

Mike
You're right .. looks like Jackson, MS is about the same as Tulsa as they are listed within 500 miles of Little Rock on the main smart site, maybe just a few miles closer to you but same 4.5 hours or so. We've got 3 smart dealer's here now in Chicago so I guess we should feel privileged! To be honest, most routine maintenance can be performed by most reputable mechanics but the more complex (or warranty related stuff) not so unless smart adds more dealers you're stuck with the long drive ... I don't think MBZ would 'allow' just any old MBZ dealer to do warranty service (even though with the recent change in the smart franchise they might) but perhaps a call to their 800 line or reaching out to the dealer you're buying it from would help. When we bought our '08 the warranty was only 2 years but the closest dealer was 45 minutes away and we complained a bit ... have not had it back since as all it's needed was routine maintenance.

The smarties's have had this issue way back in '08 when a number bought theirs out of state as the dealer network was just getting up and running so they may want to chime in as well.
 

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Like ESMART said, most "routine" maintenance can be handled by any mechanic or yourself !!

IF you need anything "under warranty" (which is now 4 years :)) just call the 800 number and let THEM worry about it !!! (they need to get the flatbed to you !) of course, they MAY not tow it back :eek:
 

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Oil changes and filters, you can do yourself, every 10K miles. Warranty work and towing to the nearest smart dealer, your out of luck. 6 hours to KC too. My car going on 5 years old. Never had a major work done to it. Pack a lunch and plan a short vacation.:):

Good Luck
 

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There are a number of smarts in the Little Rock area. The Nashville TN area smart Center is about as far from Memphis as is Jackson MS. So far, I've been able to solve my issues myself. The one exception requires a star Machine to operate the valves of the ABS to change out the Brake fluid.
Smarticus is in Little Rock and might give his input. Hopefully he will speak up here. I'm sure he would respond to a private message.
 

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First, :welcome: to SCOA! Hope you can join us in July for the smart Nationals in Denver.

Second, the fact that you were completing the paperwork long distance might have been a small clue...:p

Anyway, all the routine stuff can be done DIY or by a good local mechanic. Usually helps if you buy the oil and filter, let them do the work. smart USA has a pretty good owners site with lots of info, and of course most anything you would want to know has been covered here on SCoA so have a look around. There used to be some other owners in the Little Rock area, not sure if they are still there. :)
 

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if it's actual warranty work you'll obviously want that done at a dealer but service/maintenance doesn't have to be done at the dealer.
try some local Little Rock independent Mercedes Benz shops like:

Donnies Foreign Car Service
104 Markham Park Drive
501.224.1991
Donnie's Foreign Car - Little Rock Arkansas - car repair, service, tires, auto repair, honda, bmw, ford, toyota, donnies car repair

Jai's European Auto Repair
811 Broadway Street
501-376-1968

Hillcrest German Auto
714 S. Arch Street
501.376.8300

Nick's European Auto Repair
4210 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
501-771-0190

Bob's German Auto
8824 Macarthur Drive
501-771-7774

if they have the mercedes benz "star" computer/diagnostic system they can communicate with the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
You're right .. looks like Jackson, MS is about the same as Tulsa as they are listed within 500 miles of Little Rock on the main smart site, maybe just a few miles closer to you but same 4.5 hours or so. We've got 3 smart dealer's here now in Chicago so I guess we should feel privileged! To be honest, most routine maintenance can be performed by most reputable mechanics but the more complex (or warranty related stuff) not so unless smart adds more dealers you're stuck with the long drive ... I don't think MBZ would 'allow' just any old MBZ dealer to do warranty service (even though with the recent change in the smart franchise they might) but perhaps a call to their 800 line or reaching out to the dealer you're buying it from would help. When we bought our '08 the warranty was only 2 years but the closest dealer was 45 minutes away and we complained a bit ... have not had it back since as all it's needed was routine maintenance.

The smarties's have had this issue way back in '08 when a number bought theirs out of state as the dealer network was just getting up and running so they may want to chime in as well.

Thank you veryu much for the reply - much appreciated! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Like ESMART said, most "routine" maintenance can be handled by any mechanic or yourself !!

IF you need anything "under warranty" (which is now 4 years :)) just call the 800 number and let THEM worry about it !!! (they need to get the flatbed to you !) of course, they MAY not tow it back :eek:

LOL - my opinion exactly (in a perfect world), however they might make a fuss in that it was my choice to buy the car in the first place. I did manage to already find a way to get it there via flat car hauler if I ever need anything major, and I do have other vehicles so I'm sure I could work around it :)

Thanks for the reply!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Oil changes and filters, you can do yourself, every 10K miles. Warranty work and towing to the nearest smart dealer, your out of luck. 6 hours to KC too. My car going on 5 years old. Never had a major work done to it. Pack a lunch and plan a short vacation.:):

Good Luck

Hey - vacations are ALWAYS welcome, but to Tulsa? LOL (nothing wrong with Tulsa, but you can only see so much of it LOL).....

Thanks for the reply!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
There are a number of smarts in the Little Rock area. The Nashville TN area smart Center is about as far from Memphis as is Jackson MS. So far, I've been able to solve my issues myself. The one exception requires a star Machine to operate the valves of the ABS to change out the Brake fluid.
Smarticus is in Little Rock and might give his input. Hopefully he will speak up here. I'm sure he would respond to a private message.

Awesome, thank you - i will definitely PM him...

Thanks!

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #12
First, :welcome: to SCOA! Hope you can join us in July for the smart Nationals in Denver.

Second, the fact that you were completing the paperwork long distance might have been a small clue...:p

Anyway, all the routine stuff can be done DIY or by a good local mechanic. Usually helps if you buy the oil and filter, let them do the work. smart USA has a pretty good owners site with lots of info, and of course most anything you would want to know has been covered here on SCoA so have a look around. There used to be some other owners in the Little Rock area, not sure if they are still there. :)
Yes - well I have seen them around town, so I figured folks must get service somewhere but I have never been able to actually approach one of the owners and ask them.... And you're quite right about the paperwork! I just figured that buying a new one, and being that there were no new dealers in the area, that was my only option.... At any rate, I will keep digging, and thank you for the reply! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
if it's actual warranty work you'll obviously want that done at a dealer but service/maintenance doesn't have to be done at the dealer.
try some local Little Rock independent Mercedes Benz shops like:

Donnies Foreign Car Service
104 Markham Park Drive
501.224.1991
Donnie's Foreign Car - Little Rock Arkansas - car repair, service, tires, auto repair, honda, bmw, ford, toyota, donnies car repair

Jai's European Auto Repair
811 Broadway Street
501-376-1968

Hillcrest German Auto
714 S. Arch Street
501.376.8300

Nick's European Auto Repair
4210 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
501-771-0190

Bob's German Auto
8824 Macarthur Drive
501-771-7774

if they have the mercedes benz "star" computer/diagnostic system they can communicate with the car.

WOW - fantastic, thank you for this list! I will start calling around today and asking.... thanks!

Mike
 

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Hey - vacations are ALWAYS welcome, but to Tulsa? LOL (nothing wrong with Tulsa, but you can only see so much of it LOL).....

Thanks for the reply!
You got a point there about Tulsa. I head to St. Louis for you warranty work. Nice Drury Inn across the street from the smart dealer. At smart center Creve Coeur Mo. Lots to do in St. Louis. They might even give you a loaner car, while yours in the shop. Independent shops, can't do warranty work, listed above. Maybe change your oil, and filters only!

Drury Inn across the street from smart center pictured below.......





Do it yourself from smart............

http://owners.smartusa.com/Do_It_Yourself.aspx
 

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Ah. I remember that random gathering! We should do that again!

I'm local, and my car is the blue one next to the white up front. And that particular dealer isn't bad at all if repairs are needed. They've always done good by me. Labor is $120 an hour, but with all they do you see why. The service is great in my opinion. I came in for an alignment, and the alignment rack was down. Rescheduled and charged me half.
 

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Yes - well I have seen them around town, so I figured folks must get service somewhere but I have never been able to actually approach one of the owners and ask them...
Do ask them. I'm always happy to be stopped by a fellow smart-driver to talk smarts.

And it's a nice break from answering questions from non-owners: "is that thing safe? what mpg do you get? Really?, I thought it would be more like 60." :)
 

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Welcome to SCOA!
Since you like long distance, and I'm sure you need a vacation, how about a vacation with your smartie to Colorado for the 2013 smart car National Convention and Car Show! This is going to be the largest gathering of smart cars in the country! Who wouldn't want to be part of that... Visit https://smartcarnatls.com to register and get more information.
Enjoy your smartie, sounds like you got a pretty one!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
if it's actual warranty work you'll obviously want that done at a dealer but service/maintenance doesn't have to be done at the dealer.
try some local Little Rock independent Mercedes Benz shops like:

Donnies Foreign Car Service
104 Markham Park Drive
501.224.1991
Donnie's Foreign Car - Little Rock Arkansas - car repair, service, tires, auto repair, honda, bmw, ford, toyota, donnies car repair

Jai's European Auto Repair
811 Broadway Street
501-376-1968

Hillcrest German Auto
714 S. Arch Street
501.376.8300

Nick's European Auto Repair
4210 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
501-771-0190

Bob's German Auto
8824 Macarthur Drive
501-771-7774

if they have the mercedes benz "star" computer/diagnostic system they can communicate with the car.

UPDATE ON THIS - after speaking with the above mentioned repair shops, the only one that would perform "minor" repairs is Hillcrest German Auto, and then I would have to order my own parts and get them delivered first.

This is proving to be rather daunting, and is making me really questions whether getting the Smart is really worth it.... I really am concerned about upkeep and repair.

In the meantime, you have all been so helpful to send your replies, and I really do appreciate it very much! :)

Mike
 
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