As many of you know I took possession of my 451 Electric on 4/4/2016. I watched my little car roll over 9,000 miles on our first day together. As of today, I have 18,565 miles on the car -- I expect to cross the 10,000 mile mark before the end of the year. This is typical of my "everyday" car in terms of usage/year. However, when my parents took the Mazda 5... I lost the towhead for my tiny little utility trailer. This wasn't an issue, however, as I knew the Smart had a hitch available for it and a wiring harness for the trailer lights (required in NC).
I'd intended to get the EcoHitch for my i3, but of course life gets in the way. I run an AirBNB (former conventional rental) in the basement of my home. The refrigerator -- at 16 months old -- crapped out. Sparing the saga with Whrilpool (my advise: never buy one), I ended up with a dead fridge on my back porch that needed to be removed. So I ordered a Curt hitch and wiring harness for the Electric. You probably think I'm crazy, so keep reading...
The hitch install was really simple. Add one hole in passenger frame rail, expand center (unused) hole in driver side to fish the bolts in. Not having the engine covers the gas car has, it took about 2.5 hours start to finish to install the actual hitch, and another hour or so for me to get the wiring up.
Fun fact! Almost all 451 radio codes are identical, at least for the touch radio, because I managed to put the stupid thing into safe mode...dealer gave me the code for free. Hint: it's the default bluetooth pairing code for MOST devices. The tech actually said "someone at Mercedes must have said...who would steal these things?" Gotta love it.
With all that said let's get to the photos of my first drive with the Smart, my utility trailer, and a 201lb refrigerator:
How did the Smart do? Well, first let's address weight. I did a LOT of research on the 500-lb limit, and it's all based around the suspension. Routinely, as we Southerns are big, I've gone 100lb over the weight limit in the car. One friend in particular, the car is noticeably slower when they are in it. Given that I had 7.1 miles to drive the car overloaded, at a top speed of 40mph, I felt this was a safe one-time (I wouldn't do this routinely... that's asking for trouble).
Truth us, this is the second time I've ever had to haul a fridge...and next time I'll cut my losses and let Lowes take the dead one away (there was hope Whirlpool would fix it, but alas, they refused to repair it when the tech determined the sealed system was leaking).
So, now I have a trailer, and lights, and it's successfully removed a junk fridge. Now what?
That thing has been the bane of my existence for two years. We finally get it hooked up, and it retains water like swiss cheese. Not to worry! We have a trailer, and a saw!
There were two loads like the above, plus this final load:
I only plugged the car in while loading up the last load (15min on Level 2). I averaged 2.3mi/kWh, right at 40 miles driven, heater in use (pre-conditioned before I left + temp set to 70F for the first drive there), three "full" loads in the trailer. I would have been able to do all three runs without plugging in, but when I got home after the second run, I was nervous about only having an estimate of 19mi, so I decided to plug in.
All in all, this car continues to surpass my expectations. I truly love it. I love it more than my i3. This is by far my favorite car of all time. Not only because it's so efficient, QUICK, or adorable but because with the tiny trailer...I can park in a single parking space at Lowe's to bring home mulch