Looking for info/comments on towing the Smart car behind a Motorhome.

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Kent,
Towing a smart car.1. Key needed to be partially turned on so wheels are not locked and follow MH. i do not know the reason for using a bunge cord(s) on the later models -08 and 09. I did not use them on our trip from Portland to Southern Oregon and all went well.
2. Indicator lights- assume you mean turning and brake lights. These are connected to MH to Smart car with part of towing package. I have an electrical coil that connects the two vehicles and lights are controlled by MH signals.
3. Braking . I hope your assumption is correct because I do not plan to have a separate braking system. That's one reason We wanted the light weight Smart car for our tow car. We still have not heard about the installation procedures for a battery switch.
This is new to us also. First time MH and tow car.
January 2009 issue of Family Motor Coaching by FMCA gives annual guide to Towable 4 wheels down cars. Only Smart cars passion coupe and passion cabriolet were listed in the guide. However our2009 manual for the fortwo pure states it may be towed 4 on the floor.
Jim
This is my first trip towing my Smartie 4 wheels down. I have a Blue Ox tow bar and installed base plate. Only problem I've had is occasionally at start-up. When MH and SC are not completely in a straight line upon hook-up, I get an ocillation of the front wheels (side to side) when I start up. After I stop and straighten the steering wheel, it seems to track properly. I also believe that accelerating after the tow bar has locked may help the initial tracking. Any experiences to share??
We have our Smart Car set up for towing behind our motorhome. We took it to the Roadmaster main shop in Portland, Oregon. I think they may have now moved up to Vancouver, WA. For us it works very well. All four wheels on the ground, key in the ignition, in Neutral, lock the doors, set up the towbar and plug in the electrics so the taillights work with the motorhome. No problem.
Paul Schuessler said:
This is my first trip towing my Smartie 4 wheels down. I have a Blue Ox tow bar and installed base plate. Only problem I've had is occasionally at start-up. When MH and SC are not completely in a straight line upon hook-up, I get an ocillation of the front wheels (side to side) when I start up. After I stop and straighten the steering wheel, it seems to track properly. I also believe that accelerating after the tow bar has locked may help the initial tracking. Any experiences to share??
Paul Schuessler said:
This is my first trip towing my Smartie 4 wheels down. I have a Blue Ox tow bar and installed base plate. Only problem I've had is occasionally at start-up. When MH and SC are not completely in a straight line upon hook-up, I get an ocillation of the front wheels (side to side) when I start up. After I stop and straighten the steering wheel, it seems to track properly. I also believe that accelerating after the tow bar has locked may help the initial tracking. Any experiences to share??


My husband and I also experience the same problem when we try and tow our smart car behind the motorhome. We get an ocillation on the front wheels and a loud noise when we start moving. You seem to think that this stops once you straighten the wheels, so do we just keep the vehicle moving until it locks into place? How does it handle turns? Our steering wheel moves back and forth..

We would like to take the smart car with us this weekend from Dallas to Branson, MO and are very concerned about messing up the smart car front end.
Mark Morton said:
Have your tried backing the Smart to lock in before moving the motorhome. I think the SMART is just to light. Would like to know your thoughts

No, we have not tried to back it up before moving.
I have never understood why people who tow vehicles don't just put them on a trailer. Why put all of that wear and tear on the vehicle (not to mention the miles on the tires) when you don't have to?

Are trailers really "that" expensive?
Robert, the reasons I wanted to avoid trailering my towd were: (1) it would be another "vehicle" to buy, pay for and store; (2) one more device, as well as 2-4 more tires to maintain; (3) more weight to tow; (4) big space junk in a campsite; (5) more trouble when you have to disconnect to back into a campsite; (6) more time and effort to load and unload. I find the Smart a perfect tow car, as it needs no mechanical disconnecting of anything, demands no auxiliary brakes, and it tracks well with four wheels down. It takes me one second to perform the proper key positioning ritual and I hook up with the wheels reasonably straight. Its front wheels have shimmied only 2-3 times on me and that was when I had to make exceptionally sharp U-type turns. All I had to do to correct it was to stop and slowly move ahead and allow its little wheels to straighten out.

I have a 2008 smart fortwo passion coupe, which I would like to tow behind my motorhome.  I have been told by my local smartcenter service manager, and have read a number of internet posts, mainly about the 2009 fortwo, that recommends or requires, installation of a battery disconnect switch for towing purposes.  Does anyone have a definitive answer as to whether this is REQUIRED for a 2008 smart fortwo?? I even contacted smart usa customer service, and they said it was not required for my model year, but I keep hearing just the opposite, and I'm becoming paranoid now about towing without one, even though I PREFER to NOT use one.  Any thoughts or personal experiences on this subject would be appreciated.  You can e-mail me directly at bigcritter4@comcast.net.  Thanks in advance, and Merry Christmas & Happy New Year.

I took delivery of my 2008 Smart Passion during the first year Smarts were officially sold in U.S.  I had never heard (from Smart, my dealer or anyone else) of disconnecting the battery for towing, even though I made it quite clear that I was going to tow my new Smart extensively.  In a year or two, I read in tow car guides (MotorHome Magazine, etc.) that the battery should be disconnected for towing (an inconvenient chore, since the battery is located under the floor on passenger side and since clock, etc., would need to be reset when reconnected each time).  I contacted the magazines involved and they informed me they received this information from Smart.  I then tried to get straight answers from Smart USA and dealers and got ambiguous answers.  My dealer had to research it as they had never heard of that requirement.  After discussions with several Smart representatives, my feeling is that this is all about covering their backside, as "some" models (and I never could ascertain which models) might drain their batteries while being towed.  I am a fulltime RVer and have continued to tow my Smart numerous times a year and for numerous days at a time (often 500+ miles at a time) without disconnecting the battery.  To date (3+ years now) I have not had any signs of battery problems and I'm still operating on the original battery, which has served me well in all weather, including ice and snow.  When I originally contacted the magazines' guides, I was told that they had received "many" responses from Smart owners who did not believe it necessary to disconnect batteries, but the magazines said they would continue to print the requirement to disconnect batteries until they heard differently from Smart.

Should you ever find it necessary to disconnect power more than infrequently, you may want to look into a battery-disconnect switch, so that you don't need to pick up the carpet, et al, to do it.

But you still have to reset the clock and other memory items, right?

Gary Bryers said:

Should you ever find it necessary to disconnect power more than infrequently, you may want to look into a battery-disconnect switch, so that you don't need to pick up the carpet, et al, to do it.

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