2008 smart fortwo - Click above for a high-res image gallery

The diminutive little smart fortwo may be the darling of microcar fanatics the world over, but it's seemingly always been plagued with at least one major shortcoming: it's rough, jerky and otherwise unrefined automated manual transmission. The automaker is finally stepping in to do something about it.

For the 2009 model year, all smart fortwos come with revised computer programming that's supposed to smooth out the car's shifting routine, fixing what smart refers to as "a little hesitation between gears" in the '08 models. That's great news, and we hope it helps. Fortunately, current owners are also in luck, as smart is sending all 24,622 owners a letter offering a free upgrade. The letter says:
We will upgrade your transmission software to the new 2009 operating mode which provides improved shifting dynamics as well as instant changing between automatic and paddle shifting just by touching the up or down shift paddles.

[Source: USAToday via KickingTires]

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