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Newbie but just leased a 2016 Smart two days ago

2106 Views 13 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  halfcack
Newbie: just leased a 2016 Smart two days ago

Hi all,

This is a great forum and a necessity if you own or lease a Smart, at least for me.

I have a few questions.

I dove my 2016 Smart lease from out of state to home. Seven hour round trip. I have a quirk about steering wheel position and vibration. Toward the end of the trip home, I noticed some vibration but more a out of line or unbalanced feel. I hope this is alignment problem.

I noticed on the right side, front section where it meets the center section about a quarter to a half inch out of being properly aligned.

This may seem really picky for some and not picky enough for others but it did bother me. I can account for every second of the car's position until I checked the right side after getting home. I saw the either mis-alignment of the body or perhaps an improperly length of finishing material which makes it look that way.

We have bad roads in NYS, mid state, but nothing compared to the pot holes everywhere on NJ, NY 380. They weren't bumps but bangs. I wonder if I have already destroyed my vehicle in less than a few hours.

Also on the right side was what looked to be a scratch, I took it to the spray wash then put some spray wax on because of the temperature, then checked the places I'd parked at 4 in the morning. No white marks on the short list of places I remembered. I had not accidentally hit a rail. However, there was also a colored liquid down this streak, no animal blood, I'm sure. No human on the highways, out of cars and it was too light to determine.

I used a cloth and some spray wax, there was no dent and the mark came off as road dirt.

Due to the roll factor on the Fit I had just turned in NY with a total 3 year mileage of 8180, plus or minus for three years, with the Smart I believe that will change. What a blast. !!!!!

Unfortunately there was a crosswind that slowed truckers which hit the Fit and the Smart causing the pressure to blow out the opposite window with a whistle, three times. it wasn't a pleasant trip at night.

The two cars are drastically different to drive and because of overcorrection for the possibility of roll with the Fit, I was on the rumble strip quite a few times. The Fit was nice to drive and look at scenery, start 1-2-3, eyes back forward, the Smart was like driving a race car, at least for me.

I already reported it to Chris. Does it sound like permanent damage or perhaps a lack of material to make it look like the front and center right panels are not properly aligned, potholes or rumble strips?

The last, their is no new car smell. When I get out of the vehicle, I smell a slight odor of oil smoke or a liquid substance. I smelled my clothes, no smell. I changed my clothes when I went out to wash the stain at spray wash. No smell on them either but I could still smell that smell. Checking the clean clothes, no smell. It was like a waft inside my nose, never happened before, it was like an exhaust, oil, spilled liquid smell.

Thank you and I love that car. I blew it with a local dealer, about 75 miles about three years ago when I could have had an electric for all this time. My fault, completely, an attitude sprung up, which long since passed, 30 years ago and never returned after that short phone incident.

Thank you all. I have never joined a forum before, for a car, not even a Shelby 350, 1965, serial number 484 which I bought for 3200$ and sold for 1600$. Also, long ago, it would have rusted out unless stored by now.

Forgive grammar and spelling. I'm so tired that I'm not going to proofread this three times. Also, I have mild dyslexia.
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Welcome! To SCOA!

Every one of your questions have been brought up before so don't feel bad.

Just remember, you don't have a high end luxury car that weighs a lot and has a long wheelbase, do you will get a bit of pushing around from crosswinds. That can be helped by changing to larger tires, and switching to all 4 wheels the same size. (back wheels are wider than the front)

When you exit the car, there is a intake vent right next to the door, This is where the smell is coming from and is quite normal. It is much more noticeable when the car was new.

The body is made of plastic and the panels can be changed if needed quite easily. They all are covered with a clear coat. Plastic has a tendency to develop a static charge when air blows over it and road dust will stick to it. Using some of the spray detailers will take off the charge . The front brakes are known to create a lot of dust and coat the rims. a pain to keep clean and changing to ceramic pads will keep things cleaner. The body panels can be realigned but to get to it, the whole front has to come off. Not a big job but might not be worth it to adjust the gaps.

The vibration or alignment vibration could be a tire issue most tires on a smart don't last long because they can't be rotated but they can be aligned. Worth having it checked out. Check the tire pressures first. They are on the door post inside the drivers door. some dealers fill them all to the same pressures (which is wrong) and some over inflate them to get better MPG (also wrong) Use a good digital gauge as the old pencil type ones are not that accurate.

Hope this helps
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Back when I got my second smart, (2009) the salesman asked if I wanted the standard walk through, which I didn't get with my first smart since I got it off Ebay. he went through how all the controls worked, where to check oil, air filters, tire pressures, remotes, etc. before I left the dealership. First time I bought a new car at a dealership and I was impressed at the time they spent answering questions, and pointing out all the features. That was back in the Penske days believe me, I would not have gone anyhere else for another car or for repairs. When I did the 10K check, the service manager sat down and went over every thing they did and what to watch for, etc. They were truly an exceptional dealership and not what I expected.

When the new dealership opened up down in Rochester (MN) I stopped in for some clips I needed and they were in the process of getting everything set up. Not much on hand for parts, etc. I talked with the sales rep for a bit, and with the service manager who asked me a lot of questions about what small parts they should have (the ones that get lost when you work on these cars) they seemed like a great group of guys and not what I have heard of about MB dealerships.

When my 2 buddies at work bought their smarts, they mentioned that they worked with me and they remembered me and had a laugh about me talking them into buying a smart. When we did the drive down to Amanna Colonies (Iowa) for the rally, we all stopped in to say hello as we were driving right past and they emptied the place to come out and check out all our cars and talk for a bit.

I guess there are good dealers and there are bad dealers. Once we get a dealer, we have been lucky.
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