Uh huh, it's a fairly normal complaint.
The clock mechanism is only held in place on the PCB by the 4 solder connections that it uses to
receive the necessary power it requires to keep correct time. The clock mechanism isn't heavy but,
over time, the vibration of the car and the constant heating and cooling of the clock housing causes
the connections to crack. This gives intermittent power to the clock so it will slow or stop.
The clock is sitting on the dashboard directly in front of the windscreen, during the day the
dark coloured clock pod absorbs the heat of the sun which causes expansion. At night, it cools
down and the clock internals contract. This movement over many years eventually creates a
split in the solder points which can be seen very clearly in one of the pictures below.
Lesley is a new friend who just happens to own a smart car and probably the only smart car
owner I didn't meet through one of the forums. In May 2011 she mentioned to me that her clock had
stopped keeping good time and spotted the opportunity to finally get this information on
the website. Armed with some Torx screwdrivers I attacked her car in her work's car park.
Within 10 minutes it was fixed and put back in the car to this day it is still functioning properly.