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Thread: Smart Fortwo HID Kits??

  1. #11
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    Just to add on the legality matter, not to stir and for the OP's sake.

    The reason HID Kits or Conversions are illegal in the UK is very simple. The first reason is because the general public know nothing about how they work so you get a bunch of idiots fitting them to halogen enclosures and every motorist for miles cannot see a thing because of the glare but hey it looks cool right? No...

    Secondly, the actual discharge of a HID Bulb is a difficult thing to setup because a simple change of ride height or road surface can cause the projector cut off point to face upwards and again blind oncoming traffic, even specs of dirt on the lens of the lights can cause the light beam itself to fragment and again blind on coming traffic.

    So in order to have a Legal HID / Xenon (its much of a muchness) setup in the UK you require that:

    - The vehicle be fitted with self-levelling Projectors that change in real time to the movements of the vehicle.
    - The vehicle be fitted with headlight washers which function at least once during the operation of the headlights themselves.
    - The vehicle be fitted with approved projector enclosures.
    - The bulbs used are a certain colour temperature, too blue can be mistake for emergency vehicles or police for example and too orangey will produce less light output (kinda pointless really). OEM Xenons run at 6200K and most HID Kits are either that or 7000k either or will look identical to a OEM Xenon in any car.

    Here in SA we produce cars for your market so whilst the cars we produce (Golf 7 for example) have to adhere to your strict laws here locally nobody gives two sh*ts as long as its in a projector housing the metro cops and police cant do a thing, especially if the product is locally approved by our governing body (SABS).

    Almost amazing seeing you guys actually caring about the law and its relevant so seriously over a set of harmless lights, damn its scary!


    Smart Fortwo 600cc - The Matte Black beast in the night!

  2. #12
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    It is not illegal to fit HID kits. They must be fitted correctly and aligned correctly, it is very much a grey area with the law.
    Alice (1.3 Pulse forfour) 2007 - 2012 Zoe (1.4 SE Corsa) 2012 -

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minimike20 View Post

    Almost amazing seeing you guys actually caring about the law and its relevant so seriously over a set of harmless lights, damn its scary!
    The semantics of it are largely irrelevant, the law can't allow for that because the rules would become blurred. And as for 'harmless', I beg to differ. OEM Xenons are blinding for some, never mind bodged jobs (which is what the kit is)

    Anastasia
    Mr Poo - Mk5 450 Pulse
    Honky - 451 Passion Diesel
    Nellie - 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander

  4. #14
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    Why bother every time I see xenons on a car I wonder if people are legally allowed to drive if they have to have lights that bright to see, maybe they should invest the money on an opticians appointment because they are a pain in the Harris to all other road users

    It's like driving down a country lane/badly lit road with full beam and the person coming towards you not switching theirs down

    Its just irritating to all other road users

  5. #15
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    how do you "bodge" HID fitting??

    the bulbs sit in the bulb holders in the exact same way that a normal bulb does.

    if the bulb is seated correctly, the beam pattern will be the same through a projector lens and will pass an mot and will offer better lighting of the road ahead to spot cyclists who don't have lights, pedestrians on the left hand pavement ahead of the vehicle and obstacles in the road......like the old man who fell over in the middle of the road outside my house (and the street lights turn off at 12am)

    the reason they are "illegal" is because the lighting unit isn't CE certified for this type of bulb. it also isn't CE certified for LED sidelights either.

    osram night breakers become as dim as standard bulbs after a few months - PIAA bulbs are also excellent but these rally approved lights are also illegal as they are not CE approved.

    The HID kits are v v easy to fit (they plug into the OEM bulb holder) and provide a step change in lighting capability but you do have to drill a hole in the rear cover where you put the bulb in.

    to pass an MOT....

    the beam pattern must be ok
    IF you have headlamp washers they MUST be operational
    IF you have self levelling headlamps they MUST be operational (BUT because testing the self levelling is impossible it is not necessary to test them)

    my 200 kit lasted 4 years (radio interference issues)
    my latest 50 kit has lasted nearly a year now and has no issues at all.

    I have set out the ins and outs, pros and con of HIDs and am not promoting them nor am i saying they are poor. I am just giving my very honest opinion based on facts and the investigations i have carried out by thoroughly reading the MOT tester's guide as well as carrying out tests from various distances from my car.

    general point to note....all headlights blind you when you look at them as they come towards you (as do LED DRLs in the day but DRLs are now required by law on all new vehicles)

    second point to note.......speeding is illegal too but 90% of people do it - and i know what is more dangerous.

    JJ
    Last edited by problemchild1976; 09-08-2013 at 11:35 PM.

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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by problemchild1976 View Post
    how do you "bodge" HID fitting??
    By fitting an illegal kit. You have to replace the entire headlight for it to be legal.

    Anastasia
    Mr Poo - Mk5 450 Pulse
    Honky - 451 Passion Diesel
    Nellie - 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrPoo View Post
    By fitting an illegal kit. You have to replace the entire headlight for it to be legal.
    Only if the original headlight is a halogen enclosure i.e. the 450 Fortwo's. The 451's come with projector enclosures.

    There are kits you can buy where you can retro-fit the projector to an original Halogen lighting enclosure, these are understandably completely illegal but as JJ says, the bulbs be it a halogen or HID bulb still go into the same projector enclosure and in the same position so its just the brightness and colour temperature that differs.

    This is how a projector outputs it light:



    Now look at a Halogen enclosure:



    The intensity of the bulb in the HID enclosure does not change the glare or light spread or scatter because the projector keeps the light in touch whereas putting a HID Bulb into a Halogen enclosure just gives you a blinding light that goes everywhere and actually makes little difference over a OEM Halogen bulb.

    Its a grey area yes.
    Last edited by Minimike20; 10-08-2013 at 08:12 AM.


    Smart Fortwo 600cc - The Matte Black beast in the night!

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minimike20 View Post
    Only if the original headlight is a halogen enclosure i.e. the 450 Fortwo's. The 451's come with projector enclosures.

    Its a grey area yes.
    No. It is illegal to sell or fit a kit in this country. You have to replace the entire headlight

    Anastasia
    Mr Poo - Mk5 450 Pulse
    Honky - 451 Passion Diesel
    Nellie - 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander

  9. #19
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    You make no sense.


    Smart Fortwo 600cc - The Matte Black beast in the night!

  10. #20
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    Maybe you should read what is being said, it does make perfect sense.

    It is not a matter of: brighter, dimmer, more yellow, more white, less white more scattered, less scattered etc etc it is merely a fact that they are illegal. In the UK if you have an accident at night and have illegal anything the insurance will not pay and you will end up in gaol.

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