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Hi, picked up a 2002 SMT with 125K. Did not have a owners manual and it's on order from Helms. Question is I just noticed a sequence I am suppose to follow to shut off the car. I've just been putting the car in neutral and turning the key off. I finally saw something on the visor that says put the car in reverse or "1", turn off, then let the foot off the brake. Is this what I am suppose to do and doing it the other way will damage the SMT? Like I said, this is new to me, drove the car maybe less than 200 miles so far and it's ok. Was even thinking about getting rid of it, reading all the problems listed on this site. TIA
 

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The SMT is more reliable than not. Oldman is correct.

Cancel the manual. the only ones worthwhile are the ones from Toyota. (Send me a PM, I'll tell you all about the 2002 SMT manual) Those should cost you either $15/28 hours to download the PDF's, or ~$100 for the paper albums. And yes, they're giant.

You're fine parking it in "N." Just make sure the e-brake is doing its job, since they tend to go bad if they get water frozen in the cables.
 

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...doing it the other way will damage the SMT? Like I said, this is new to me, drove the car maybe less than 200 miles so far and it's ok. Was even thinking about getting rid of it, reading all the problems listed on this site. TIA
I don't know of anything you can do to damage the SMT system. Push the buttons, shut it off, pop it into neutral while driving, try to shift into 1st gear at 80mph...whatever you try you won't hurt the SMT system, and the system won't let you hurt the engine. As with any transmission, if you leave it parked in Neutral it could roll away. I think it's a good idea to change the SMT system fluid as a maintenance practice. Other than that, you should enjoy picture-perfect downshifts, no worries about blowing your engine up by over-revving with a missed downshift, no need for double-clutching or rev matching, you don't even have to worry that your wife or your kids or punk friends will burn up the clutch by slipping it too much - the SMT system does all the clutch-work for you.
 

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Parking in 'N' and pulling the brake should be fine as long as it's on a flat surface and not freezing, just make sure you park it in gear on inclines. Both the manuals and SMT's have a problem with the e-brake sticking in freezing weather, so I suggest you do it then also.

The SMT's are relatively trouble free, what the problem tends to be is the lack of knowledge of the systems by technicians, so people start hunting around for DIY fixes on sites like this.
 

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I got a 2002 5SMT and the owner's manual says "The vehicle can be parked with the selector lever in any position" and "...while depressing the brake pedal, shift selector level into the "R" position on a level or downhill, and into "S(1)" position on an uphill" (page 85). Personally I treat it like a manual basically put it on Nuetral or 1st and don't forget to pull the hand/parking brakes.
 
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