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Discussion Starter #1
I believe it's good form to post an introductory message when joining a new forum, so here I am.

I just acquired a 2015 smart electric drive two days ago. It's a gas! (sorry, no pun intended). Paid cash for it, drove it home (side story: I just moved into a home equipped with an EVSE, which is why I bought my smart in the first place), charged it, and now I'm learning it as best I can. Bright Yellow Flame with Black interior.

This is my secondary vehicle. My primary is a 2014 Mercedes-Benz E350 coupe with the AMG sports suspension. I'm not giving that one up!

So, why the title of this post? Yesterday I learned that the MB dealer closest to me (~15 miles) was discontinuing its smart operation. That leaves me with the only smart dealer/service center 41 miles away, through the worst traffic in the nation (Washington, D.C. suburban) on roads that ooze anger, aggressiveness and drivers who never encountered a steering wheel before they found themselves in the nation's capitol.

My used smart ED reports that service is needed in 71 days. Given the logistics, I will now need to take a day off from work, brave the horrible traffic, and wait while the car is serviced and charged up before enduring the drive home again. This does not make me a happy camper!

I am hoping to connect with smart ED owners in the NoVa or DMV area who may have some insight on how to best cope with this situation.

Also, given the mixed messages emanating from Deutschland (all smarts will be electric in 2018+, but support for them is dwindling), I'm hoping the bright yellow of my new smart doesn't turn out to be lemon!
 

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I am assuming that you are referring to Tyson's Corner MB as the one that is discontinuing smart operations?

I got my 2014 smart ED from them and have had all the service done there.

I live in McLean, VA and drive a pink "Hello Kitty" smart ED
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes, that's the place! I've always bought my MB's from ASC, but they aren't a smart dealer. My 2015 was purchased used through an independent, but it still carries the remainder of the warranty, so I hoped I'd be able to have my service done at Tysons. Are you saying they will still service them even if they no longer carry them?
 

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Yesterday I learned that the MB dealer closest to me (~15 miles) was discontinuing its smart operation. That leaves me with the only smart dealer/service center 41 miles away, through the worst traffic in the nation (Washington, D.C. suburban) on roads that ooze anger, aggressiveness and drivers who never encountered a steering wheel before they found themselves in the nation's capitol.
Today I learnt that my two local dealers (Clearwater and Tampa, Florida) are also stopping sales of smarts. However, they will still service them. So, check with your local dealer. They might still service them, even if they don't sell them.
 

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My used smart ED reports that service is needed in 71 days.
If its the 1 or 3 year service do the following:
  • Check for proper operation of all the car systems (lights, brakes, AC etc). You probably already noticed anything...
  • Look at the motor compartment for leaks
  • Look at the differential for leaks
  • Oil the door hinges
  • Oil the lift gate hinges
  • Look for any other problems that might be covered by warranty (corrosion on the wipers?)
  • Spray some rust preventative stuff on the appropriate parts
  • Replace the 2016 battery in your key fobs if you figure they need it
No problems found? Reset the service indicator.

If its the 2 or 4 year service:

  • Do the stuff in the 1 year list
  • Replace the cabin air filter (in the driver footwell above the accelerator thingy)
  • Get your brake fluid flushed (DOT4) at a garage.
  • Get the HV battery desiccant cartridge and replace it. It screws in on the bottom of the battery.
  • Check the brake pad thickness. (its probably fine if you're using the regen). Ours are at about 1/2 at 25000 mi and 3 yrs.
No problems found? Reset the service indicator.

The cartridge replacement is actually pretty easy and the item is fairly cheap ($30) but you'll have to pay for shipping. :( There is a howto floating around somewhere. You'll need a specific sized torx for your wrench (70mm?).

MB also does an HV battery check which has always been OK for me. If you want to do your own there's an open source tool by Odyssey that you can build.

There's really not that much to keep an eye on...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
If its the 1 or 3 year service do the following:
  • Check for proper operation of all the car systems (lights, brakes, AC etc). You probably already noticed anything...
  • Look at the motor compartment for leaks
  • Look at the differential for leaks
  • Oil the door hinges
  • Oil the lift gate hinges
  • Look for any other problems that might be covered by warranty (corrosion on the wipers?)
  • Spray some rust preventative stuff on the appropriate parts
  • Replace the 2016 battery in your key fobs if you figure they need it
No problems found? Reset the service indicator.

If its the 2 or 4 year service:

  • Do the stuff in the 1 year list
  • Replace the cabin air filter (in the driver footwell above the accelerator thingy)
  • Get your brake fluid flushed (DOT4) at a garage.
  • Get the HV battery desiccant cartridge and replace it. It screws in on the bottom of the battery.
  • Check the brake pad thickness. (its probably fine if you're using the regen). Ours are at about 1/2 at 25000 mi and 3 yrs.
No problems found? Reset the service indicator.

The cartridge replacement is actually pretty easy and the item is fairly cheap ($30) but you'll have to pay for shipping. :( There is a howto floating around somewhere. You'll need a specific sized torx for your wrench (70mm?).

MB also does an HV battery check which has always been OK for me. If you want to do your own there's an open source tool by Odyssey that you can build.

There's really not that much to keep an eye on...
I'm not sure what happened to my reply to this post yesterday, so I'll respond with great thanks. And an update.

At this moment, I'm sitting in the customer lounge at MB of Tysons Corner while my ED goes in for service. According to their records, the previous owner/lessee never had it serviced at a dealer, so they have no history on which to go. I'm probably looking at a $300-$400 bill as a result. That doesn't really bother me if it gets the vehicle up to spec and on record insofar as the warranty is concerned.

Blaine, your check list is very helpful, and moving forward, I may just do these things as a matter of routine (getting to the dealer in the kind of traffic we have around here is not the best way to start one's day!). At the end, you say, "reset the service indicator." Exactly how does one do that? I don't recall that being mentioned in the owner's manual. :shrug:

The good news is that I don't have to drive to Germantown, MD. for service. At least not at this point. I can make this trip (despite the hassle of traffic) and back all on a single charge! :)
 

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Resetting the service indicator

If you end up doing your own service work you should consider getting access to Evilution. There is quite a lot of stuff that wouldn't apply to your car, but much that is invaluable.

How to reset:
Evilution - Smart Car Encyclopaedia

I've been building up my own more comprehensive ED service checklist but its not quite in a shareable format. Ping me next year when you're thinking about doing another service.

Also, if you are still in the MB lounge, do make sure they check for leaks on the differential and also the coolant pump. They probably don't check these as a matter of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If you end up doing your own service work you should consider getting access to Evilution. There is quite a lot of stuff that wouldn't apply to your car, but much that is invaluable.

How to reset:
Evilution - Smart Car Encyclopaedia

I've been building up my own more comprehensive ED service checklist but its not quite in a shareable format. Ping me next year when you're thinking about doing another service.

Also, if you are still in the MB lounge, do make sure they check for leaks on the differential and also the coolant pump. They probably don't check these as a matter of course.
You guys are great, thanks!!!

I'm probably stuck in the lounge for a few hours, as I was not offered a loaner (my MB dealer -- not the smart location -- provides a loaner as a matter of course). Thankfully, they have wi-fi, and my job allows for me to work online.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
If you got a complete owners manual packet, both the service items to be done as well as the reset procedure are covered. If not, they are available online to download here:

https://www.smartusa.com/vehicle-manuals

Len
2014 EV
Thanks, Len. I received what I believe is the full complement of manuals, but it's always nice to have them in PDF form so I can refer to them on my tablet or phone. :)

Incidentally, the manuals link includes an Electric Vehicle Homepage manual, which mentions a VVC. How do I obtain that? Can I ask the dealer doing the service?
 

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I was finally able to stop by MB Tyson's Corner and confirmed that after they sell off their current stock of smarts (5) they will no longer sell smarts (and will not even place special orders).

But, they will continue to service them (including electrics).
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I was finally able to stop by MB Tyson's Corner and confirmed that after they sell off their current stock of smarts (5) they will no longer sell smarts (and will not even place special orders).

But, they will continue to service them (including electrics).
Hi @wrumbarger, thank you for the update. I had my electric serviced there last week (to the shock and horror of many -- me included; a brake job and new tires on top of the standard service). The service advisor said to me as I was picking it up, "See you next year!"

Not for $1,800, you won't.
 

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I had my electric serviced there last week (to the shock and horror of many -- me included; a brake job and new tires on top of the standard service).

Not for $1,800, you won't.
A MY15 ED already in need of tires and brakes, how many miles? $1,800, YIKES - how much for the HV battery (owned or BAP) inspection?

Doesn't Virginia have a vehicle safety inspection program? As this was purchased from an "independent dealer" I'd be asking how they could sell a car with tires and brakes in need of service?

Obviously they didn't spend much money "reconditioning" your car . . .
 

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Discussion Starter #17
A general reply to both @MB DNA and @SuperSmartie. This may be a bit long and rambling. If so, please forgive me and forebear.

I haven't bought a used car since somewhere around 1986. And buying an electric car -- any electric car -- wasn't on my radar until I recently bought my home. It had a Level 2 car charging station installed, and that got the ball rolling. I didn't want to add another installment loan, so I looked for a car I could buy outright. I checked out the Leaf at CarMax, read up on the i3, and even visited a Chevy dealer to look at the 2017 Bolt. None of those appealed to me.

But I saw a few smart cars online. The very first car I bought was a 1961 Mini Cooper (in 1969). I paid $300 for it and immediately turned around and dropped another $600 into it. Adjusting for inflation and time, that equates to about $2,040 to purchase and another $4,080 to bring it up to my specs. So, it's not the first time I've bought a tiny car, and not the first time I've spent a lot to make it "road worthy."

The car has a fresh Virginia safety inspection sticker, but the MB dealer reported the right rear tire was a snow tire! So, while the vehicle may have been deemed safe, it wasn't necessarily "up to spec." I wasn't expecting the service to cost as much as it did, and I did think maybe I was being taken advantage of. I've had a 25 year relationship with _my_ Mercedes dealership, but they have never been a smart dealer, so I took it to the one that was (note the past tense). I paid the $1,800 because I want my smart to be as good as it can be. Knowing that I have had it professionally serviced makes me feel more comfortable with it. But I'm certainly not going to be comfortable paying through the nose each time I need service!

So there you have it. I'm now the happy owner of a flame yellow 2015 smart ED. I like the car (driving it is a bit of a change from my E350C4!), and I have no intention of letting it go. At least for the foreseeable future. Perhaps I overpaid on repairs, perhaps both the seller and the dealership were a bit on the "shady" side, but I'm not going to lose sleep over it. I'm just going to be more careful and cognizant in the future.
 

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So there you have it. I'm now the happy owner of a flame yellow 2015 smart ED. I like the car, and I have no intention of letting it go.
But how many miles are on your MY15? Other than the tire mismatch, brakes seem early?

Think that the dealership may have hooked you up with their Gold Service Package and you supplied the gold!

Enjoy your "renewed" smart ED.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
But how many miles are on your MY15? Other than the tire mismatch, brakes seem early?

Think that the dealership may have hooked you up with their Gold Service Package and you supplied the gold!

Enjoy your "renewed" smart ED.
Yes, that's very likely. This was an impulse purchase all the way!

Now having gotten it, and paid for everything (service, registration, insurance, etc.), I'm going to keep it as pristine as I can.
 
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