frequently asked questions

general maintenance

1) I am having issues resetting the service indicator.

There are several reasons why you may be having this issue:
A. The buttons may be stiff. The cluster function button on some vehicles may take some considerable effort to press.
B. If you reset the maintenance by cluster at the wrong time, you can get out of sequence on the 1 wrench vs. 2 wrench schedule. This will carry along to the next service.
C. Although the directions may not be clear in the manual, you need to turn the key on first and then depress the cluster button for the second step and keep the cluster button depressed until it resets.

2) Why does my panoramic roof craze?

This is due to UV exposure. Since the March 2012 production models, a new roof material has been introduced. It addresses the tendency to craze or crack as the old roof did from UV exposure. Please note this is not a safety concern -- it is purely cosmetic.

3) Why has my panoramic roof lifted off the tridion cell (glue failure)?

Glue failure may have been from using the wrong glue if your roof needed to be replaced. The applier needs to read the instructions carefully as there are two kits: one for the panoramic roof and one for the full roof. They look similar but will only bond properly for their designated roofs. For this reason, it's important to visit your local smart center to insure installation is done properly should it be needed.

4) I hear something rattling in the tridion cell frame area of my smart, what should I do?

Metallic rattles are difficult to pinpoint. You should visit your local smart center. The dealer has a "chassis ears" tool that can locate the issue. This tool sticks on to the vehicle with magnets and contains high quality microphones to discover the issue.

5) My smart is having issues shifting in reverse.

If the input speed RPM is too high at the time of shifting into reverse, the banging-into-gear can occur. Lack of a proper lubricant on the input shaft can also cause this issue, since the disc can stick to the shaft. Lastly, an overheated clutch can cause shifting issues from the disc and/or flywheel having hot spots on them. There will be one more SW update coming later this year. Expect it by the end of year (Q4). This will address shifting smoothness again.

6) Why are my headlights burning out quickly?

Headlamp bulbs can be sensitive to higher system voltages on cars. There is a resistance kit (A 451 540 23 06) that can be installed to reduce the voltage on the headlamps and prolong their life. Headlamps with integrated resistors have been installed in production since December 2010.

7) How do I clean and maintain the matte paintwork on my smart?

A. Maintenance
To preserve the matte surface, paint cleaners, abrasive and polishing products as well as gloss preservers or wax must not be applied to the paintwork. It is especially important not to polish the vehicle as it will cause glossy patches in the matt surface. If polishing is performed, the matt effect can only be restored by repainting. Excessive rubbing with unsuitable products can also cause brightening. Frequent use of unsuitable washing facilities can increase the luster.

B. Cleaners
The vehicle should preferably be washed by hand with a soft sponge, neutral soap and plenty of water. Frequent use of washing facilities can increase the luster and thus lessen the matte effect.
Always avoid washing in direct sunlight. Any insect or bird lime should be removed immediately by soaking with water and using a high pressure cleaner. In the case of difficult-to-remove insects, spray first with the insect remover (Part number: Insect Remover A 002 986 11 71 11).

8) What products do you recommend to clean your smart?

For regular, non-matte vehicles, we recommend following these steps. The products referenced in the steps can be purchased at your local Mercedes-Benz center.

1. Wash vehicle with car wash solution and dry with a soft towel (Product Number: BR00.45-Z-1002-04A)

2. Apply fine polishing paste (Product Number: BR00.45-Z-1015-04A) to a lambskin wheel and buff out damage locally. Continue by buffing up any visible polishing marks, gradually working to buff the entire panel.

3. Rub off polishing remains with clean polishing wad moistened with water until the surface is clear. Repeat steps 2-3 with silicone-free polish instead of fine polishing paste. (Product Number: BR00.45-Z-1013-04A)

4. Treat the surface with a gloss preserver (Product Number: BR00.45-Z-1014-04A)

For matte smarts, there are special cleaning instructions that are referenced from our Daimler technical documentation. In order to preserve the luster of the car, perform these steps:

1. Rinse off the car with plenty of clean water.

2. Shake up bottle of matte paint quick care product (Product Number: BR00.45-Z-1078-04A) and spray over a large area. Avoid wiping or polishing the matte paint quick care product as the matte surfaces will otherwise become damaged or shiny.

3. Remove blotches immediately using a microfiber cloth and applying light pressure. Between uses, ensure the quick care product is capped to prevent it from drying out.

9) Is the new drive app iPhone 5 compatible?

The new smart drive App 2.0 is iPhone 5 compatible. You can download the application here:

10) Where is it legal to park perpendicular to the curb? What countries, US states, cities?

Perpendicular parking rules are governed by states and local municipalities. Join our Insider conversation to learn more:

11) Why isn't the diesel engine available in the US?

As of right now, there are no plans to bring the diesel smart to the US. The demand for diesels in the US is generally low. Also, the technology investment required to meet the US's strict emissions regulations would lead to a much higher MSRP, which may set it out of many people's price ranges.

12) How do I adjust my seat?

13) How do I use my media port?

14) How do I set my dashboard clock?

15) How do I activate my car’s smartShift transmission?

16) How do I open the smart’s hatchback and tailgate?

electric drive

1) What's the price of the smart electric drive?

The smart electric drive is available as low as $12,490 with Battery Assurance Plus and after federal tax credits. Visit for full details.

2) What's the federal tax credit for the smart electric drive?

$7,500. Go green, earn green.

3) Where can I find my local incentives?

The Alternative Fuels Data Center has all the info you need when it comes to federal, state and local laws — not to mention neat incentives — for electric vehicle owners. Lots of states reward going green. California offers unlimited access to HOV lanes, even if you’re the only person in the car! Your electric drive will also be exempt from certain tolls.

4) Can you lease the smart electric drive?

Sure! Whether you want to buy or lease, there’s a smart out there for you. You’ll find great retail and lease offers for the electric drive. And don’t forget to ask your local smart dealer about our Battery Assurance Plus SM rental program. It lets you buy or lease the car and rent the battery at an affordable price. The battery comes with a guaranteed capacity of 41.6 Ah and replacement up to 10 years. Plus, we’ll give it annual maintenance — so you can quit worrying about battery and just drive. See the brochure for details.

5) What's the warranty going to be like on the MY13 smart electric drive?

It’s a 4 year/50,000-mile warranty — same as the gas-powered smart! The battery warranty is included with the vehicle warranty, so it’s basically a 2-in-1 deal.

6) Performance - What the heck is MPGe?

MPGe is a unit of efficiency. You could also call it a unit of awesomeness. It’s the electric vehicle equivalent of miles per gallon. Manufacturers use it to make the best battery for the size of a vehicle. In a gas-powered vehicle, a “high fuel economy” means high efficiency. Likewise, high MPGe in an electric vehicle means high efficiency. Not to boast, but the smart electric drive is highly efficient.

7) Performance - What is smart's MPGe?

122 city, 93 hwy and 107 MPGe combined. In other words, the kind of performance that calls for applause.

8) Performance - What's the range of the new electric drive?

The EPA determined our range to be 76 miles city, 59 highway and 68 miles combined. (Fun fact: The average American drives 29 miles/day.) High fives all around! Just remember, while this is the official test figure, your actual range depends on driving behavior and external factors such as outside temperature, speed and traffic. Some days you'll get more miles out of a full tank (or charge) than others. Such is the journey of life.

9) Product - Is the electric vehicle bigger or smaller than the gas model?

NEITHER. Both models have the same surprisingly spacious interior and ample cargo space. That’s because we ingeniously swapped the fuel tank for a battery and put an electric motor where the conventional piston engine would be. Impressed? So are we, and it’s our car!

10) Product - Can I only get the smart electric drive in white and green?

Oh, please. We wouldn’t do that to you. The MY13 electric drive has the same exterior and interior color options as the gas model (except for the Crystal Grey leather interior). Just check with your local dealer on inventory and you’ll be on your way.

11) Charging - Where can I find public charging stations?

One word: PlugShare. The app (created by an independent company we really dig) gives you a map of charging stations that you can access from your phone at any time. Like the ecofriendly lovechild of Google Maps and Yelp, PlugShare lets you see charging stations by location, leave reviews for charging stations you’ve visited and add new ones to the map. Also, your smart electric drive comes with a membership to ChargePoint, one of the largest networks of independently owned charging stations in the country.

12) Charging - Can I still charge with a standard household outlet?

You don't have to use a charging station, but it's faster. Charging stations output 240V — as opposed to the 120V found in most households. You can also get a charging station installed in your home.

13) Charging - How do I recharge the battery, and how long does it take for a full charge?

Don't worry, friend. It's real easy. Each smart electric drive comes with a charging cord for normal 120V household outlets as well as a charging station option for 240V outlets like those used for electric ranges and clothes dryers. (Or really big leaf-blowers for all we know.)

Below are some charging times to give you an idea of what to expect. It can vary when it’s very hot or very cold, but here’s what would happen on a perfect day (77 degrees):
  • With the 240V – charge times:
  • charge time from 0 -100% SOC (240V) = 6 hours
  • charge time from 20-100% SOC (240V) = 4.5 hours
  • charge time from 20-80% SOC (240V) = 3.5 hours

14) Charging - What about a 'fast charge' option like they have in Europe?

Sadly, we don't have a fast charge option in the US right now. But we're confident that overnight charging with the 120v system or the speedier 240V system will meet the needs of most drivers. And who knows? One day, maybe you’ll be able to charge it with your mind.

15) Charging - Regenerative braking? Huh?

Hold on to your science seats. When the car is coasting and you first set foot to brake, the electric motor acts as a generator. This slows the car and pumps electric power back into the battery. Only when the driver pushes harder on the brake pedal do the conventional brakes come into action. So the momentum of the car is converted to extra electrical power, extending the car's range by using energy normally wasted during braking. It sounds like magic, but our engineers assure us that it’s just physics.

16) Charging - What kind of charging station is recommended for the electric drive?

There are two types of charging stations. Both can be mounted on a wall or pillar.
  • Bosch Keba Basic EL-51207 – Price $1,322
    • Charging capability only. Able to fully charge the smart electric drive in 6-7 hours.
    • Recommended for at-home charging.
  • Bosch Keba Connected EL-51208 – Price $1,628
    • Provides diagnostic capability in addition to charging (LAN Connection required).

Both the Keba Basic and Keba Connected can be used indoors or outdoors, and require an input of 208-240V, single phase, and a 40A dedicated circuit. Both come with a 2-year warranty.

17) Charging - Does smart have a preferred provider for charging stations and installations?

You bet we do. We have a nifty agreement with Bosch Automotive Service Solutions. They provide installation, service and ongoing customer support for all charging stations. Visit the Bosch Automotive Service Solutions website for more details. Tell them smart sent you. They'll know what that means.)

18) Battery - What's the warranty on the smart electric drive battery?

You'll be completely and supremely thrilled to learn that there's a 4-year warranty, and it's included in the warranty of the vehicle. But if you're a free spirit and just want to rent the battery, we have a nifty rental program called Battery Assurance Plus. It's uber affordable, you're guaranteed great battery capacity and we'll give your battery an annual maintenance check-up. That’s three great things plus a car — four great things, really.

19) Battery - Does the battery have to be run-down to zero periodically to keep it up to snuff?

Nope. The electric drive has a lithium-ion battery and doesn't require this. Really specific problem solved!

20) Battery - Why did smart choose a lithium-ion battery?

A lithium-ion battery charges quickly, lasts long, is relatively lightweight and can be easily recycled. Why? Because you deserve the best, that’s why.

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