Let’s go for another piece of Smart knowledge. One that Top Gear never does (and hopefully never will do, it’s great like that): actual consumer advice.

Twisted seat belt

Your seat belt may twist out of nothing. You’re unsuspectingly entering your Smart, and the belt feels uncomfortable, or may not get back in its housing, if you let it go. I had this problem for about a month and was on the point of calling my mechanic to unscrew the holder at the bottom, untwist and then re-screw this. Fortunately, this was not needed:

You can turn the belt back at this particular bottom screw. You can turn the holder around the screw, it’s not fixed. Just grab the most bottom piece and turn it a few times around the screw, and it’s fine again.

Beverage holder

The Smart uses a pretty neat module system to house accessories like the CD holder and the ashtray. If you look at the bottom of your center console, you can see a couple of grey, round plastic covers. They are covering small screws, because the thing is modular. You can get the ash tray out and install another CD holder, if you feel so.

The bottom screw though is reserved for the beverage holder, even though you can fit another module if you want to. I wanted a holder from the newer series (451) because it can hold cans too instead of only bottles. Once shipped, you can unscrew the old holder and then pull (you really have to pull it hard) away. It may need a lot of force, because it’s fixed with Velcro. The new one is a little easier to install, but there’s only a torx screw included. Use the old one, it works fine and you can use your screw cover again.

Gear 0/Parking

If you try to change into Reverse and your gear display just says “0”, it’s because you didn’t press the brake. In general, if you’re changing from Drive to Neutral or Reverse, press your brake.

Additionally, your Smart hasn’t got a special parking gear. Change to Reverse, but only with a running engine. This will engage gears, like you set a manual car to first when parking it. If you switch gears with your engine off, it won’t engage them, since the gear changer only does its work with a running engine.


When operating your roof, turn your engine on. Yes, it works without that, but the roof operating system needs more power than the battery delivers. Technically, you can operate the roof at any speed, there’s no speed limit employed. However, reports of users on the Internet show that this can greatly damage the operating system of your roof, especially when there’s wind, like when a truck drives past you.

You can drive on highways too, but be ready for the noise. I suggest to close the windows, because the wind vulnerability gets greater with roof + windows open.