At Smart-TECNIC Ltd we have become increasingly saddened by the the amount of poor workmanship we have seen on Smart cars that have not been maintained by specialists. Here we have some pictures to show what we mean. The following pictures are all from one car:
(Left) A typical problem we have seen is damage to spark plug leads due to their being removed without use of the proper tool. Three leads can be seen in this picture, the one on the left has been cut and the red internal sheathing can be seen, whereas the one in the centre is not a Smart spark plug lead at all – presumably the original was damaged so badly that the lead had to be replaced with one from another car; we think this lead is from a Vauxhall Corsa.
(Right) This is not a spark plug lead for a Smart car.
(Left) A missing hose clamp should have secured this pipe onto the turbo inlet.
(Right) This is the turbo outlet pipe, which carries boost pressure into the intercooler. On this car the hose clamp (painted red for some reason) has been fitted too high on the pipe, thus when it was tightened it has squeezed the rubber pipe and pulled it off the very thing it is supposed to be secured to.
(Left) Another picture showing the same. These pictures show that this car is effectively not turbo-charged and thus can be described as ‘Naturally Aspirated’
(Right). Worse is to follow. This is the pipe that carries boost pressure out of the inter-cooler into the throttle body and inlet manifold. Again the hose clamp is missing and the pipe is completely disconnected from the throttle body.
(Below). Then we discover that not only is the pipe not fixed to the throttle body, but it has also not been attached to the throttle body properly and has been shoved in to the throttle opening, crushing the pipe and reducing the intake air supply even further, as these photographs show.
The following pictures were again all taken from just one car. This car had clearly had quite a bit of work carried out at some time in the past, but again the standard of workmanship was very poor:
The pipe marked with the white line is the main brake servo-vacuum pipe and should be routed over the large pipe pointed by the arrow. We routed the pipe as it should be. The large pipe is an after-market performance intercooler pipe.
(Left) The connection being pointed to should not be there. It should be clipped to the top of the engine subframe, and again we were able to put that right.
(Right) The nut-and-bolt circled should not be there. It is holding the front undertray to the upper wheel-arch lining, but there should be a plastic push-pin fastener there…
… attaching both undertray and liner to the steel bodyshell by being pushed into the yellow clip. (Undertray removed in this picture).
(Right) Both front and rear undertrays are hanging down below the sills…
… due to broken and missing clips. All put back as it should be by ourselves.
(Right) Here the front driver’s side wheel arch liner is unfixed…
(Left) … due to missing plastic push-pins.
(Right) As shown correctly fitted on the passenger side
(Left) This is very serious: This is a picture of the main battery power cable where it emerges from the battery box formed in the steel bodyshell and which sits beneath the passenger’s feet.
Circled in white is a large rubber grommet which should have been inserted into the hole in the yellow circle to protect the power cable. The cable is free to chafe against the hole and this could very easily cause a major power failure and in the worst case, it could cause a fire. It took only a moment to fit that grommet properly into it’s hole.
(Right) In this picture, the clip arrowed in red should be fastened to the casting pointed by the yellow arrow, and the white arrow points to a missing small bolt which helps holds the intercooler housing in place.
(Left) This is the alternator, with new drive belt fitted as part of the ‘C’ Service. The alternator is missing it’s plastic protective cover…
(Right) … we had a spare so we popped it on.
There is nothing magical to keeping Smart cars as they should be, but all too often the ordinary mechanic working in the average garage just does not have the time or experience to put everything back on the car in the correct order that he took things off. At Smart-TECNIC Ltd, we pride ourselves in doing the very best to keep the cars as they were when they left the factory.