How to change panels on a smart car

Written by michael dickson
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How to change panels on a smart car
Give your Smart car a personal touch with custom-painted body panels. (small_car image by Marc Dubus from

Every exterior body panel on the Smart car can be replaced if you're looking for a colour change. The Smart car's body panel system makes it a very popular vehicle in Europe and recently in the United States. Companies specialising in custom-painted body panels for the Smart car have given Smart owners the ability to swap panels, creating a fully customised vehicle at an affordable price. The process does not require a mechanic and can be done at home in just a few hours.

Skill level:

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  1. 1

    Lower the window and peel back the rubber door strips.

  2. 2

    Raise the window all the way. Place your knee in the middle of the door's outer panel by applying enough pressure to loosen the top of the panel. There are three clips holding the panel in place. With your fingers, gently pry back the top of the door panel, peeling it away and releasing the three clips. Lift up and the door panel will come off.

  3. 3

    Open the door for door panel installation. Close the window fully.

  4. 4

    Slide the door panel skin along the track on the door frame. Once completely in place, push your knee into the middle of the door, causing a small gap to appear at the top of the door panel and the door frame.

  5. 5

    Position the three clips along the top of the door frame and release your knee slowly. The panel clips should catch and secure the door panel in place.

  6. 6

    Open the window completely. Lay the rubber door strip down on top of the door and push it into place.

Tips and warnings

  • Clips may break if being removed in cold weather.

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