This 1958 Isetta 600 is the limousine of microcars
It isn’t every day that you’re given the opportunity to purchase a “limousine” that’s actually shorter than a Chevette. So look quick before it’s gone.
Featured on Barnfinds.com and for sale on Craigslist in Omaha, Nebraska, this 1958 BMW Isetta 600 Limo—it’s all relative, Einstein said—could be yours for $9450. The seller says the Michelotti-designed Isetta 600 microcar is “complete and solid” and in mostly original condition. It has received $2000 worth of new and rebuilt parts.
BMW’s 9.5-foot, 1236-pound Isetta 600 bridged the gap between its smaller 300 and the automaker’s larger cars. Like the 300, the 600 has the Isetta’s signature forward-opening front door, but it also has a right-side door and rear passenger seat. The rear-engine BMW received a 582-cc horizontally-opposed, overhead-valve, air-cooled two-cylinder powerplant, derived from BMW’s R50 motorcycle, and at 23 horsepower, the car offered a top speed of 60 mph. It was outfitted with a four-speed manual gearbox and four-wheel drum brakes.
Although BMW’s Isetta 300 and 600 models offered decent, inexpensive transportation, they ultimately lost the economy battle to the Volkswagen Beetle, which was almost four feet longer than the 600 and had more power.
A 1958 BMW Isetta 600 Limo has an average value of $47,800 in #1 (Concours) condition and $13,700 in #4 (Fair) condition, so for less than $10K this is perhaps the project of someone’s dreams. As the seller says, it “will need work, but [it’s] a good start.” And there’s room for four—preferably if they’re already acquainted.