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As a general rule for cars that have only one reversing light, the fog light is positioned on the driver's side and the reverse light is on the passenger side. For smarts, the arrangement is the same:

  • LHD cars: Fog light is on the left cluster and reverse light is on the right.
  • RHD cars: Reverse light is on the left cluster and fog light is on the right.

Early fortwos were all imports as RHD production had not started. However, in the UK, the fog light must be on the right hand side of the car (i.e. close to the middle of the road when driving on the left).

So the right hand cluster has the reverse light as shown here:

And the left cluster has the fog light as shown here:

Importers of pre-UK smarts responded to this by adding an additional fog light on the right hand side of the car. However, this addition looked similar to something that can be found on a caravan...

The wiring to this light was taken from the left hand light cluster, bypassing the original fog light.

In order to remove this hideous additional light, you will need to source some RHD rear light lenses for the pre-facelift model. Alternatively you can replace the entire light cluster with a later design. More info on clusters can be found here.

Start by removing the clusters from the car. Both clusters are held in place with a 10mm plastic hex nut.

Now disconnect the wiring by lifting the little tab first (small arrow).

To replace just the lenses, you need to dismantle the cluster. Push the two tabs (arrowed) and the lamp will unclip from the cowl. Unhook the lamp from the tabs circled.

Unclip the lens from the lamp by pushing the tab indicated below.

If you are fitting a pre-facelift RHD style lens, simply refit. It's as simple as that!

You now need to turn your attention to the wiring. One the left hand side, you will see a bypass where the wiring to the old fog light was removed from the light cluster and fed down to the nasty low level fog light.

Carefully cut away the heat shrink and expose the connector. Disconnect the red wire. You can see the yellow/red wire still has its contact pin in tact.

Line up the pin on the wire with the black connector and fit as shown. You may need to lift the barb on the socket slightly so that it doesn't simply slide out of the connector.

Now take great pleasure in removing and destroying the nasty bolt on lamp. This will be attached to the bottom bracket of the rear panels. The wire to it runs along the crash bar.

Refit your new (or modified) clusters.

The wiring now needs to be swapped to allow the correct lamp operation.

If you are feeling invasive, you can separate the wiring looms and route the two wires from one side to the other. However, we are simply going to do a cut-and-join.

Start by removing the seats and peeling back the carpet behind the handbrake.

This is the point where the wiring from the main fuse box splits and goes to either side of the car. As you look at the picture, the red/grey wire going to the left is the reverse light circuit; the yellow/red wire is the fog light circuit. We were fortunate that these wires were at the top of the wiring loom. To be on the safe side, we spiked each cable to check that they were the correct ones. When either light is off, there should be 0V on each wire. With the lights on, 12V should appear.

Expose both wires by unraveling some of the tape that holds the loom together.

Now cut each wire ensuring that you have left enough slack to connect opposite wires to each other.

Join the wires as shown. We used butt splices and crimps for a good connection.

Now tape up the loom so that the wiring doesn't get snagged in the future.

Roll back the carpet, refit the seats and test operation of the lights. The lights are now fully compliant with UK driving and removal of the bolt-on lamp makes the rear of the car look much better than before!


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