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SheepRock

Smart Cars and the Embarrasing Cost of Ownership

48 posts in this topic

It's too bad Eddy on the west coast doesn't have a truck load of brothers eh? One in every province would be nice???Those west coast smarties sure are lucky too not only have a good smart dealership but too have an independant like Eddy too boot.Sigh.................life just isn't fair....Anyone wanna buy a low mileage well taken care of 2006 smart?serious enquiries only

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:clapping: KUDOS to sheeprock (and MB/smart) for an eminently reasonable exchange! A refreshing communication versus the whining and threatening tactics we see so often from both sides in a dispute of this kind.

Bil :sun:

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Anybody know of an alternative to mercedez service in the Vernon Kelowna area. (Preferably Vernon)Thanks

Kamloops smart centre is very good!

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Rog Man, check with Chris's Auto Service in Edmonton. I believe they work on Mercedes vehicles, maybe they'll do smart as well?

I'm going to check this one out too - believe me, once I find a good third-party smart mechanic everyone in Edmonton will know about it, starting with this forum.

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Rog Man, check with Chris's Auto Service in Edmonton. I believe they work on Mercedes vehicles, maybe they'll do smart as well?

I will certainly call them but unless they have the overpriced star system too communicate with our cars, pretty much all the other maintenance is DIY.I do my own oil changes as i have found they are easier than on a regular vehicle, As for belts and such , i haven't needed that YET but if I own the car long enough and put enough KM's on her i will need too address those items in the future.it's things like the electronic clutch adjustment which i don't need yet but i am sure the time will come?I've owned this car since 2006 and only have 25000 km's on it.I don't abuse her in any way but time and mileage will cause failures in time.I know in the past any shops i have called cringe as soon as they hear smart car, nobody wants too touch them??

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Thanks SheepRock for writing to MB and posting their response online.

Even when i go slow the oil change takes 15 minutes TOPS !!!, another half hour too look at all the various things that need too be looked at.Thats 45 minutes. Ok add in a coffee break and it's an hour..The price MB charges here is absolutely insane!!!!They insist on having the car ALL DAY too help justify the cost!?They do a quick wash and hope you don't notice the scratches in the paint that weren't there when you dropped it off and send you on your way.I love this little car But i truly wish it DID NOT have a mercedes engine.Thats the worst thing that ever happened to this wonderful little car !! In my own biased opinion of coarse.MB is the reason i will probably eventually sell this car and get something japanese.

It's the same with the Toyota dealers. I usually take it in right in the morning so that I only wait 45 mins. If I drop it off at a "normal" time like 9am, it'll be there all day and "ready at 5pm"And I refuse all car washes. My car always end up with scratches.

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Since we're nowhere near a dealer, and I've always done my own servicing, this thread has left me mouth agape, and shaking my head. It costs me roughly the same for an oil change/service for my 53 Ford 3 ton, my 93 Jeep Cherokee, my Yamaha ATV, and my Suzuki sportbike as it does my Smart car. (The Honda civic is a little more because a) its too low to get under, and B) its too big to get in the door I cut in the bike shop for the Smart, so I have it done in 15 minutes at Envirolube.)Warranty? Keep records. If it breaks, they truck it out. The guy from Goose Bay got that in writing from MB.Carl

Edited by yukoner

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Hi GuiesMy turn to complain. I love my Smart, this is an amazing car. I keep my car in spite of all the incidents I had with it. Each time, I am always surprised about the cost of main parts. Too many parts seem to be fragile and expensive ( ex. turbo, diesel filter, etc)My waranty is over now. So I try to do my own service. MB service is so expensive and on top of that, there is no plus value. I would say it is worst than average. I have the same feeling than dealing with Canadian Tire.The oil change is very easy on a smart car ( It is like my old Westfalia). :) When you check the things MB do for a service A and a service B and the price they asked for it. :angry: It makes me sick. I will never buy a big Mercedes. Too much money involved for a service wich is not better than other makes.I hope the time, somebody will release a maintenance manual on the Smart, is not too far in the future.Cheers

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Well having read all of this, and with my 2005 out of warranty by a good bit, and with a $450 "B" service under my belt I am ready to tackle my own servicing. I have always done my own service on my other cars, but with a new car that was "special" I thought I would spend the extra and get it done "right". Regretably my local dealer, Lone Star Motors in Winnipeg has had a change of service manager since I purchased the car, and the new guy doesn't have the same level of care as the previous mgr.I have taken my smart to a service center in Winkler MB where I now live for a wheel alignment and to get new tires put on. The mechanic has abrother inGermany who owns a smart, and the owners of the shop are nice people. It used to be a Minute Muffler, but is now affiliated with C.A.R.S (canadian automotive repair service) I got better service from them the last time I was in than I do from the dealer, So I know where I'm going next time.I just need to get a service manual for it now.

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Hi, just wondering if these problems are the same with a 451? I am picking one up tomorrow and hope I haven't sunk into a money pit. I have a 08 Civic and I have always done my own oil changes regularly. I get the filters from the dealer and thats that. I says in honda manuals that break pads, oils, and lights have no bearing on warranty. I hope smart is the same.

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You shouldn't have ALL the same problems with your 451 smart. The service intervals are a lot longer on the gas 451. 16000 kilo's(?)intervals for service checks,as compared to 8000 kilos for the diesl 450 smarts. The 451's cuurent engine is NON-TURBO charged, and as such is not as 'finicky'. I did have some problems with my (early production?) 2008 451 smart.Heater problems, rattles/squeeks,non -opening tailgate ,etc.My new 2008 451 was back at the dealership for about 9 days total,during the first 28 days i owned the car!! I was VERY pissed off!, and ended trading the car back in to the same dealer, for another used diesel 450 smart!I can only hope that most of these problems have been resolved on the 2009's.

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Well I had all except the sunshade issue on mine (CEL, stuck shifter, loose driver's seatback, blown fan motor, poorly stuck on "passion" sticker etc).

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The problem with doing your own oil changes on the 451 is that you have to take it to the dealer to have them reset the service interval clock. Make sure you have receipts for the oil and filter(s).

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:( I also bought my 2006 diesel at David Morris in Edmonton. The only service under $200 dollars was my first one. Everything since has been everywhere from $300-500. We have a 2006 Mazda5 with approximately the same km yet over that same period we have spent over $2100 less on it. I complained about the cost (more than once) and was told that SMART Canada was looking into it. I never did get an answer so I finally bought a Pella Pump and started doing the oil changes myself. That doesnt irk me half as bad as knowing that I can now buy a new 451 with the same options as my 450 for almost $10000 dollars less and with three free years of service thrown in. Where's the fairness there??? We love our smart but we had to draw the line somewhere. DIY has been OK so far with the exception of changing my low beams but thats another story.

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I am totally p***ed off now. :angry: I love my 2005 Passion and have defended it through much ridicule and skepticism, and thought you people wait and see who comes out on top. Boy was I wrong!This week was the final straw. When I brought my smart in for service “B” in Halifax I told them about the oil spots on the back of my smart, they checked it out and it turned out to be the intercooler that was leaking. It cost me $400.00 for intercooler and around $340.00 for labour. But that’s not all… as my daughter and I were driving to MB in Halifax for service “B”, which is a 3 hour drive from Digby County the check engine light came on as it had done a couple of days before. And with it came a significant lose of power. (I had mentioned it to MB when I made my appointment for the “B” service).I was thinking it might be the EGR valve that was sticking but to my horror they told me that the computer was showing a code for a clutch problem and turbo problem. They told me they could adjust the clutch but it probably wouldn’t help because the clutch had already been adjusted once and that the turbo could let go anytime. Total cost for clutch and turbo over $3000.00.Now I have spent over $9000.00 in repairs over the past four and a half years for mechanical repair to keep this car running and I am total just mad but mostly disappointed. I can still here the sales person’s words when he was trying to sell me my smart “These cars are really tough, I have heard of some people getting up to 700,000 Km out of the smart engine with no problem and man… drive it as if you had stolen it". And when my daughter and I walked in for service “B” the service person said with a grin as he wiped off his chin "Your well on your way to rebuilding her again”. If only he knew what I was thinking when he said that.My Smart has been traded.Boo Hoo!

Edited by frenchy4

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I feel your pain, Frenchy - I'm in somewhat of a similar situation, feeling quite abandoned by the dealership that has cared for my car for much of it's life, frustrated at having to admit to my friends and coworkers that it is time to stop dumping money into the pit (which they'd been telling me to do for quite some time, and sad.It is a great car, and I can't ever imagine that I'd feel "home" in anything else on the road today, at all. That's probably what upsets me the most; the thought of losing a way of life, or something that's felt so right for so long. I'm really torn and just don't know what to do.I'm thinking that over the next few years, as these crippling problems start coming up on more and more cars reaching their premature end-of-life, there will a real shift from fun to the frustration and despair that you and I are feeling... sucks we're the ones to get there first.-Iain

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I feel your pain, Frenchy - I'm in somewhat of a similar situation, feeling quite abandoned by the dealership that has cared for my car for much of it's life, frustrated at having to admit to my friends and coworkers that it is time to stop dumping money into the pit (which they'd been telling me to do for quite some time, and sad.It is a great car, and I can't ever imagine that I'd feel "home" in anything else on the road today, at all. That's probably what upsets me the most; the thought of losing a way of life, or something that's felt so right for so long. I'm really torn and just don't know what to do.I'm thinking that over the next few years, as these crippling problems start coming up on more and more cars reaching their premature end-of-life, there will a real shift from fun to the frustration and despair that you and I are feeling... sucks we're the ones to get there first.-Iain

Hi Duck, I guess hearing from you make me fell a little better knowing I'm not the only one that feels this way. I'm driving my daughters Honda CRV and gasing up the beast doesn't feel good or right, like a sickening feeling in my stomach. Your right about losing a way of life. And feels all most like losing a good freind.I'm now thinking about trading it in for a Toyota Matrix.-Paul

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