Occassionally my Smart Car will not engage either in forward or reverse. After I fool with it a while it usually goes into gear. Has anyone had that problem

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Make sure you come to a complete stop before trying to change gears.  Also, make sure that you feel the detent on the shifter and see that the cluster display shows the correct gear selected. 

There's a tip on our FAQ (http://www.smartusainsider.com/faq#faq05).

Let us know if that helps.

This post is nearly 5 years old.  Anyone tried to get smart USA to cover this problem recently?  My '08 cabriolet has 60K miles and started having this issue several months ago - often won't shift into reverse and sometimes drive when cold but don't think it has been an issue yet after it warms up.

This is a commonly discussed issue w the early 451's. I have the same problem w my 2009, especially when it's cold. If you haven't already, read the postings on this subject on the SCOA site. From what I've determined, two things can cause this. One theory is the early 451's clutch disc would stick on the transmission input shaft. A newer design clutch disc and new lube would fix it. The second theory is the transmission shift motor needs to be re-lubed. There's a great YouTube video from a 450 owner that describes how to do that and I would recommend you start there cause it's a whole lot cheaper and faster than replacing the clutch disc. Also, when my 451 does this I put the shifter in manual mode then I push the shifter forward and then pull it back as if I was upshifting and then downshifting and this seems to reset the transmission computer and it learns which gear I'm in and I can drive away w no problems.

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