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2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello!
I just got myself a 2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe, non-turbo petrol.

Unfortunately for me, this was kind of an impulse buy, so I do not know much about them.

I did scroll down the forum, but there are some issues that are not really covered or I was not lucky enough to find them. These are my questions:

1. How to secure the hood panel? It can be opened (taken) without a key and car locked. That is a very odd thing to see and I am a bit worried that it will not stay there for long (due to neighborhood). Also, is this safe during fast(er) driving? feels a bit flimsy...

2. My car has a strong vibration when driven at normal speed. I was assured that the spark plugs are to blame. I will change them tomorrow, but is there anything else that might cause it? The mounts look OK.

3. The heater is a bit slow to heat up (at least compared to my Jaguar, Ford . Is this normal?

4. Outside temperature is always 109 degrees. I suppose the sensor is damaged, but will it affect how car behaves? Also, can I somehow change it to Celsius?

5. Mine does not have automatic headlamps - Can I retrofit them?

6. Is there any way to lower the drivers seat? I cannot find height adjustment and it is a bit higher that I would have preferred.

Notwithstanding any issues that I currently have, this is an amazing little car and I am regretting not buying it earlier :))
 

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Can’t lock the plastic hood. Nothing really to steal under there. It is a flimsy plastic panel.
Your vibration when driving. Check into having have your tires balanced.
The front seat, are a fixed height. No adjustment. Nothing to retro fit.
The engine is in the rear, it takes time for hot water to be pumped up to the heater core. Normal operation. Heats up in a couple miles.
There aren’t any retro fit auto head lamps available. I don believe they were ever offered from the factory. In 2008.

Enjoy your car.
 

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1. See Video link for hood pin mod idea. Mean while take your hood panel off and on a few times to see how it fits and try to dislodge it while it is latched
to try to gain confidence. I personally drive at high speeds in high wind often and get no vibration or issues with my hood panel. A motivated individual
will break into or vandalize any vehicle, Mine street parked in NYC with all other cars with out any extra attention.
 

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2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe
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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thank you for responses.

I took the car to the mechanic and change the spark plugs. who discovered two out of three locks when not even tightened. big part of the vibration went out but the car still vibrates more than I think it should. Second mechanic confirmed that the mounts are good which is a bit confusing. vibration is minimal when stopped the car vibrates when moving at low revs. Is there anything we should consider

I found out that I have some other issues as well :)
I thought that my car didn't have power steering but obviously it has but doesn't work. I understand this is a "buy new one and mount it" job, but can it be reconditioned?
And my horn doesn't work :(
 

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2017 453 Passion ED/EQ
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304 Posts
Re: the plastic hood. Look very closely to where the upper outer edges (closest to the windshield) go. There is a groove that they slide in, and they tend to slide up and over the groove instead of actually going in it. They need to be locked into the groove.

Re: the heater. Check to see if you might also have heated seats. Buttons on the center dash will show these. Some members have also added aftermarket seat heaters, but they may sit you up even higher.
 

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Thank you for responses.

I took the car to the mechanic and change the spark plugs. who discovered two out of three locks when not even tightened. big part of the vibration went out but the car still vibrates more than I think it should. Second mechanic confirmed that the mounts are good which is a bit confusing. vibration is minimal when stopped the car vibrates when moving at low revs. Is there anything we should consider

I found out that I have some other issues as well :)
I thought that my car didn't have power steering but obviously it has but doesn't work. I understand this is a "buy new one and mount it" job, but can it be reconditioned?
And my horn doesn't work :(
A new electric one isn‘t that expensive. Those top slots on the hood. That slide points on it, are completely worthless. You can pull the top of the hood off. Cut the holding cord. Take off with it. Hoods for smart cars, are really not that in demand. For the taking. Nothing to worry about.

If your smart, had a power steering rack install, to a non power steering car. The cars computer, needs to be update to recognize the rack. My car wasn’t equipped powers steering that came with the comfort package. The wiring is there from the factory. I had the smart dealership install one 11 years ago. Up date the software.

65066
 

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Greg, do you know the car's history? What year is your smart? Passion model? Looks like it had gone through a bit. The 451 power steering has a fuse (same fuse with ESP, power steering, airbag; see Evilution's website). Is the airbag light on, too?
Maybe the steering / airbag was replaced sometime ago. Improperly replacing the steering wheel can cause horn and or airbag malfunction. You are in Georgia (Europe), I noticed from your flag choice. I don't know much about the country, but being in Europe seems to be where smarts thrive.
 

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2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe
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Discussion Starter #9
Greg, do you know the car's history? What year is your smart? Passion model? Looks like it had gone through a bit. The 451 power steering has a fuse (same fuse with ESP, power steering, airbag; see Evilution's website). Is the airbag light on, too?
Maybe the steering / airbag was replaced sometime ago. Improperly replacing the steering wheel can cause horn and or airbag malfunction. You are in Georgia (Europe), I noticed from your flag choice. I don't know much about the country, but being in Europe seems to be where smarts thrive.
I honestly have no idea about the history. My car broke down (2004 Jaguar XJ, that will never let go) and and this was in the used car dealership across the street for very tempting price. So I left my car at the garage and bought this one just because I loved the looks and the concept of the microcar.

The model must be passion because that is what the sticker on the door says. The power steering had to be operational at some point, sometimes it kicks the in and works for quarter of a turn. Then it switches off again. When parked, rotating the steering wheel results in intermittent activation of the power steering. I suppose there is a way to disassemble and reconditione the unit. Availability of parts is little to none in Georgia. I only found brake pads and spark plugs. for any other part I have to order it from UK or USA.

Today I've replaced the battery in the key and it works fine. The panic button activated the horn so everything should be fine with the horn and the fuse. It has to be the issue with the steering wheel. I will try to find a garage on Saturday that will be able to disassemble the steering wheel and see what's in there.

These cars are quite rare in Tbilisi and only reason I have not tried to mess with the steering wheel is that I don't know the garage that has the star diagnostic tool with the specific software for the smart cars. the authorised Mercedes service centre told me that they do not have the software for the smart and I have to find some garage that does. I don't want to have airbag light because that will fail the annual inspection and I have 20 days to prepare the car for it. Only two issues inspection told me to repair to pass are the horn and front parking light bulbs (the smallest ones. I could not reach them myself. My hands are too big to fit there 😂). After I finish with inspection, I will go back to power steering.

Meanwhile I am looking for yet another mechanic to find out why the hell car vibrates so much :( prevoius two are left clueless after the spark plug change did not fix it :)))
 

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2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe
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Discussion Starter #10
Re: the plastic hood. Look very closely to where the upper outer edges (closest to the windshield) go. There is a groove that they slide in, and they tend to slide up and over the groove instead of actually going in it. They need to be locked into the groove.

Re: the heater. Check to see if you might also have heated seats. Buttons on the center dash will show these. Some members have also added aftermarket seat heaters, but they may sit you up even higher.
I don't have heated seats. I'm sure seats are fine for most, but I'm 192cm high and I don't fit unless I retract the shade :)))
 

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I've not dealt with power steering on a fortwo, but I am guessing it is electic assist as some other units are. Could be a broken wire causing intermittent connection?
 

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Greg, any CELs lighting up while the engine's running? Even if there are none, could you hook a scanner up the OBD2 and look for frozen ones, at least? (now this is not funny, but is there a black electrical tape taped over your CEL? It should be just below your Power steering light}. Don't ask why I ask!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I've not dealt with power steering on a fortwo, but I am guessing it is electic assist as some other units are. Could be a broken wire causing intermittent connection?
l will check the connectors but it's more likely to be dirt or oxidation. from what l researched, it is electric power assist
 

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2008 Smart ForTwo Coupe
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Discussion Starter #14
Greg, any CELs lighting up while the engine's running? Even if there are none, could you hook a scanner up the OBD2 and look for frozen ones, at least? (now this is not funny, but is there a black electrical tape taped over your CEL? It should be just below your Power steering light}. Don't ask why I ask!
No, nothing. CEL lights up when ignition is on and turns off as soon as engine starts. l am still convinced that the vibration is due to mounts. If it isn't mounts, only thing left is the clutch.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
1. See Video link for hood pin mod idea. Mean while take your hood panel off and on a few times to see how it fits and try to dislodge it while it is latched
to try to gain confidence. I personally drive at high speeds in high wind often and get no vibration or issues with my hood panel. A motivated individual
will break into or vandalize any vehicle, Mine street parked in NYC with all other cars with out any extra attention.
I just watched this video and I am amazed how weird "Racing" Smart looks :)))
======================================
Some update before weekend:
1. TPMS occurs to be working fine, my tires where low :)
2. CEL popped up. Plugged my cheap Bluetooth OBD II reader to find P0071 code that must be the ambient temperature sensor my car is missing. Cleared faults, no issues whatsoever.
3. Driver side seatbelt is acting funny - you really need to concentrate to use it, so I will either replace it or just buy extender and use it.
4. My steering wheel is easier to turn (lighter) with engine off :D

I will be taking the car to the garage on Saturday to fix as much issues as I can. limitation with parts availability is really messing up everything :(
 

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1. See Video link for hood pin mod idea. Mean while take your hood panel off and on a few times to see how it fits and try to dislodge it while it is latched
to try to gain confidence. I personally drive at high speeds in high wind often and get no vibration or issues with my hood panel. A motivated individual
will break into or vandalize any vehicle, Mine street parked in NYC with all other cars with out any extra attention.
I'm happy to see my hood pin idea being shared 🙂
 

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Can’t lock the plastic hood. Nothing really to steal under there. It is a flimsy plastic panel.
Your vibration when driving. Check into having have your tires balanced.
The front seat, are a fixed height. No adjustment. Nothing to retro fit.
The engine is in the rear, it takes time for hot water to be pumped up to the heater core. Normal operation. Heats up in a couple miles.
There aren’t any retro fit auto head lamps available. I don believe they were ever offered from the factory. In 2008.

Enjoy your car.
My 2008 came with auto headlights and wipers, heated leather seats, they were an upgrade package. ordered them when I got on the wait list before they came over to USA.
 

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Look under the car, see if it’s the standard engine mount or an aftermarket poly type. If it’s been replaced with an aftermarket one you’ll feel everything.
 
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