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The San Jose Smart Center "opened a case" for my 2014 Electric Drive(ED) which has what I call a severe "whine" in the lower number half of the radio AM section. Sitting at a traffic light electric drive not running no noise--step on accelerator with radio on station 610 and the second the motor starts the whining starts somewhat keyed to revs i.e. more noise as revs pick up! The Smart Center Tech said they were aware of the problem but neither they nor Smart Tech had a solution. My question? What are you going to do about it? Blank look on face! Followed by my noting my extensive high level contacts at MBNA as a past MB Dealer followed by them getting active and apologetic and opening a tech solution request case number. I would expect that I will hear something in a few weeks? My car is in warranty so no charge to me but if I were paying I would go to a good local car stereo install/repair shop and ask their advice? Sounds to me like it needs a noise suppressor installed between the radio antenna and the radio a common and inexpensive part and easy home or shop fix. THC
 

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Welcome to SCoA.

I will keep my mouth shut about that center. Still a little sore that they wasted a few drives there from Central Valley for me killing 2 days off.


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Discussion Starter #3
Welcome to SCoA.

I will keep my mouth shut about that center. Still a little sore that they wasted a few drives there from Central Valley for me killing 2 days off.


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You did not get it fixed I assume? Hmmm not nice sorry to hear that! If you like I'll let you know when/IF I hear something on the fix? Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think not by the sequence of the sound and the fact that it does not stop at higher speeds like 50mph for example whereas the "ped. warning noise maker(PWNM)" is
supposed to stop at 20mph? But I am going to try to disconnect it to see if it is the problem i.e. screw the pedestrians if it is the problem. I'll report back asap. touchyu2
 

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I would think that most electric cars are going to have some sort of AM radio interference. I have a Fiat 500e, and get plenty of motor whine on 560AM. I believe it is because I am located in San Jose, and 560AM is broadcast from San Francisco, a distance of about 50 miles. And yes, as I get closer to San Francisco, the whine diminishes. So the solution is to phone up KEAR (610AM) and tell them to up their signal power output. Seriously, this might be a case of spending hundreds of dollars to get rid of the whine, as installing filters everywhere may still be insufficient. Its not like you can put in resistor plugs and a noise suppressor on the distributor cap.
Things that might, MIGHT help.
0. Have an aftermarket or the Premium Audio radio installed.
1. Larger or different AM antenna.
2. Additional shielding around the power leads to the radio.
3. Additional shielding around the radio itself.
4. Additional shielding around the motor.
5. Tuning off frequency slightly, say 600 or 620.
6. Adjusting the Treble to absolute minimum.
7. Investigating if the radio station also broadcasts on the FM band. Some AM stations do. Or there is an FM station with equivalent programming.
8. If the radio is satellite capable, investigating if the local station relays through the satellite, or there is a satellite station with equivalent programming.
I understand your pain. In all of my cars, the lower AM band reception is just garbage.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The "whining" sound at the low numbers on, only, the AM section of the radio receiver continues way past the supposed 20mph stopping of the Ped. Warn. Sound
and continues all the way to 75mph! I next disconnected the Pedestrian Warning Sound behind the headlight and then tested the car with the result NO CHANGE!!
So I conclude the Ped. Warn. Sound is not the guilty party unless there is something in the way it works that I don't understand? Always possible of course!! TC
 

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Electric motors produce electromagnetic interference. It's probably the whine from the drive motor or a harmonic. Older vehicles had the same issue from their alternators or ignition coils. It was so prevalent, Radio Shack had a device that could be added to the spark plug wires to/from the ignition coils to suppress the noise.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks. I am 35 years in the car business and aware of that but was seeking the specifics from the factory who usually has solved the problem and knows exactly what needs to be done. What you were mentioning is called an "ignition suppressor" that in some cases goes on the ignition wires but better is one on the antenna between the radio and the antenna. Partly I want the car fixed by the factory as under warranty on their dime but failing that I'll fix it my self. Seeking leads and those who have either fixed theirs or failed to and thus check that solution off my list! I am pretty sure a suppressor will do it but would like to know the specifics? Thanks for the help!
 

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Partly I want the car fixed by the factory as under warranty on their dime but failing that I'll fix it my self. Seeking leads and those who have either fixed theirs or failed to and thus check that solution off my list!
As an early ICE adopter AND an ED owner here is the reality - THE FACTORY in France/Germany, smartUSA and with a couple exceptions, your local smart Center just don't care!

After two threads and over three years I have seen no interest on the part of smart/M-B towards this ED issue.

Seems that they see it as A FEATURE?

Good luck and please keep us posted on your battle...
 

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Sorry to hear about your troubles! I don't have much hope for you to receive help from MB/smart.

Consider the recent history: the mothership's lack of dedication to the far more intrusive issue of the gas tanks on the brand new ICE 453s, that affected tens of thousands of cars. I doubt they will waste any thoughts on your obscure annoyance with the radio in a discontinued model that a handful of drivers have complained about.

You better find a way to help yourself!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
As an MB dealer of better then 35 years and the owner of 5 luxury car franchises, MB, BMW, Porsche, Rolls and Bentley, in the Fremont AutoMall directly across the freeway from the the now TESLA then NUMMI factory I think i have forgotten more about the car business then you will ever know or learn! You are wrong that the giant company Daimler does not have the resources to run down and correct any and all technical problems otherwise I would not have gone to the trouble of getting the San Jose dealer to open a technical "case" on this problem as there are a number of other customers who have the problem as well even at that one SMART store. And as it is not a serious problem, I can listen to other stations when i am driving the car, I will wait a bit before fixing it myself on my dime as opposed to MB's dime! Interestingly my Maserati GranTurismo convertible has the same problem on the lower AM stations from 540 to 660 but nowhere else and not at all in the FM section of the radio. However my Mercedes-Benz SL550 and my Porsche Turbo Cabriolet do not have the problem at all. Thanks for the observation for what it was worth! THC
 

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As an MB dealer of better then 35 years and the owner of 5 luxury car franchises, MB, BMW, Porsche, Rolls and Bentley, in the Fremont AutoMall directly across the freeway from the the now TESLA then NUMMI factory I think i have forgotten more about the car business then you will ever know or learn! You are wrong that the giant company Daimler does not have the resources to run down and correct any and all technical problems otherwise I would not have gone to the trouble of getting the San Jose dealer to open a technical "case" on this problem as there are a number of other customers who have the problem as well even at that one SMART store. And as it is not a serious problem, I can listen to other stations when i am driving the car, I will wait a bit before fixing it myself on my dime as opposed to MB's dime! Interestingly my Maserati GranTurismo convertible has the same problem on the lower AM stations from 540 to 660 but nowhere else and not at all in the FM section of the radio. However my Mercedes-Benz SL550 and my Porsche Turbo Cabriolet do not have the problem at all. Thanks for the observation for what it was worth! THC
Yep, and it's all about YOU having finally "upgraded" to a lowly smart . . .

With your 35 years experience in the car business, you obviously don't need the support of the uninformed smart owners who frequent this Forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
You are exactly right I need no ones support but if you read back at the start I did add to the discussion and gave others in the area a place to go to find out about the case! My "lowly SMART" I got when another Porsche dealer GAVE me the car to close a deal to order a $200k Porsche
GT3 and I decided to keep it as I have not ever had an electric car and wanted to see what it was like use one daily. It happens to be particularly useful where I live in the small town of Monte Sereno NorCal where about everything I need is on flat ground only a few tens of miles around me. As it is in the middle of Tesla country near Apple, Netflix, Google, FaceBook, Intel etc. there are charging points everywhere! So I'll likely keep it until the ordered race car comes in and then donate it to a charity radio fixed or not! Fun little toy though actually!
 

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No need to turn this into a flame war; we value all viewpoints and opinions; gives us perspective. Personally, I am happy to see touchyu2 join us. It would be very valuable to have a former MB dealership owner share his expertise and knowledge. I am also heartened to see his praise for the ED despite owning numerous other desirable cars.
 
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