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Thread: Unable to engage reverse gear

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    A one bus a fortnight town in Suffolk !, , United Kingdom
    Posts
    26

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    Having lots of trouble engaging reverse gear.

    Brake pedal is depressed, try to select reverse, the gear display changes from 'N' to '0' and the reverse light comes on, this may happen 10 or 12 times before the gear display shows 'R' and reverse gear is selected.

    If I accendently leave the car in 1st when the engine is switched off, it can also be a pig to select 'N'.

    Any ideas ?

    Ta Jace

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Fudgesmart Manor, Suffolk.
    Posts
    68

    Post imported post

    The gear selection process is electrical not physical, the reversing light illumination is physical..... if you follow.... I dont know the ins and outs of the box but it sounds like a sticky solernoid.....see if you get any informed responses, I can ask questions on Monday!
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Plymouth, Devon
    Posts
    1,157

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    Brake light switch.
    Common problem, costs about 20 quid (i think) from a dealer, and takes about 20 mins to fit (If you have a jack/axle stands)
    i found with mine... hold the brake for a couple of seconds before sliding it into gear... may make a difference.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Awful Aylesbury, , United Kingdom
    Posts
    286

    Post imported post

    Hi chuffer here , had the same problem over Christmas tis as said, brake light switch going out of alignment fixed under warranty 20 mins max cant be much!!!
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Mexico
    Posts
    1
    Hello, Jace I have exactly the same issue in my Smart Fortwo 451, I can't engage reverse gear in some ocations. The last weekend I was about 10 minutes to engage the reverse. I turned off the car, I pressed brake in different positions, I drove in "1" some meters, I saw too the reverse light comes on and still the problem.
    This problem is not all the time, but it is frecuently, about 1 time in the week. Somebody knows what can I do?

    I will appreciate if somebody was solved this issue.

    Best Regards

    Pedro

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,964
    Quote Originally Posted by pemase View Post
    Hello, Jace I have exactly the same issue in my Smart Fortwo 451, I can't engage reverse gear in some ocations. The last weekend I was about 10 minutes to engage the reverse. I turned off the car, I pressed brake in different positions, I drove in "1" some meters, I saw too the reverse light comes on and still the problem.
    This problem is not all the time, but it is frecuently, about 1 time in the week. Somebody knows what can I do?

    I will appreciate if somebody was solved this issue.

    Best Regards

    Pedro
    On a 451, trouble getting reverse is symptomatic of the car needing a new clutch, as long as you are pressing the foot brake when selecting reverse

    as far as I know they didn't lubricate the splines properly on the early 451's so the clutch sticks/binds on them

    You need a new clutch imho

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    BRISTOL
    Posts
    2,493
    Quote Originally Posted by pemase View Post
    Hello, Jace.....
    The original post was in April 2005 - not sure he is still around

    JJ

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Inverness
    Posts
    1

    Thumbs up Problems engaging reverse.

    Hi I recently had this problem but it ha been rectified by contacting a couple of Smart garages and speaking directly to a mechanic.
    My issue was - I could not engage reverse, the mechanic in the smart garage asked if I had brake lights - the answer was no. He advised that there could be a few things but to start of with the simplest things first. I purchased a brake switch which comes with a replacement cover,@ 22. I asked the guy in the parts to print me off the details of where exactly the bit was to go, he did this for me no problem.

    I am not mechanically minded and done the job myself.
    The switch that needs replaced is on the brake pedal which is accessed from beneath the car - easy to get to! you need to remove the plastic cover beneath the car first 10 or 12 screws that's all, the whole job took me about 35minutes.

    I hope this helps!!!

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