We were about a half hour into our drive to the Cape on Labor Day weekend when we suddenly heard a horn honking incessantly on the highway. Jay was driving in the middle lane and I was in the back with Paris and asked “Is someone honking at us?” Just then, a big rig in the slow lane caught up with us and made eye contact. This prompted Jay to look closely at the rear view camera and he yelled back to me “Inky’s hood fell off!”
After waiting to safely pull over, we stopped in the breakdown lane and jumped out to take a look. The hood didn’t come off completely thanks to a safety strap connecting the hood to the frame, but the drivers side dragged on the ground and a big chunk was missing. We used two bungee cords to secure the hood to Inky and jumped back into Lady T.
We’ve traveled all over the country with Inky and never had an issue with the hood, so as I was stewing in aggravation, I thought about what could of caused this. Earlier in the week, Inky had service at our regular mechanic, so I dialed them up to ask a few questions. The person who answered happened to be the one who completed the service on Inky and admitted that he had a little difficulty with the hood latches! We appreciated his honesty and he said he would inform the owner of the issue. Within a hour of my call, we received a service notification for after the holiday.
We dropped Inky off the following Tuesday and it turns out, his color is one of the rarest to find replacement parts for since Smart discontinued selling gas powered models in the U.S. in 2017. The shop initially found a blue “service flap” as their called at a junk yard but when it arrived, it was in worse shape than ours. They then called a Mercedes dealer in Boston, who assured them they were shipping the correct part number. What they didn’t note is the correct part number is now silver because our blue is no longer available.
The shop called us to explain what happened and texted a few photos of the silver hood installed. Silver matches the trim perfectly and we thought it looked pretty cool, so we gave them the green light to keep it on. They also returned the original damaged hood, which we’ll keep handy in case we need an emergency replacement.
We would like to thank Absolute Auto in Shirley, MA for their outstanding service! Another mechanic would have likely passed the buck and this would have cost us a few hundred dollars to replace. Absolute has been taking care of all our family vehicles for several years, including Lady T, and we will continue to give them our business.
Check out these pics and let us know what you think!