BMW Iso Isetta Bubble Car

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BMW Isetta

BMW / Iso Isetta Bubble Car

1955 - 1962
Single cyl.
247 - 297 cc
12 - 13 bhp
4 spd. man
Top Speed:
80 km/h / 50 mph
Number Built:
4 star
Iso Isetta Bubble Car
There are some strange chapters in the history of any great car manufacturer, and one of the worlds greatest marques, BMW, has two that come readily to mind.

The first is EMW (Eisenacher Motoren-Werke), the East Germany company that continued to build cars after World War 2 from a former BMW plant (they were originally also trading as BMW but were forced to change their name to EMW following legal action). The second was BMW's liscencing of the Iso Isetta "Bubble Car" in 1955.

Looking more like a novelty than a real car by today's standards, the vehicle was in fact way ahead of it's time and proved to be very popular in Germany, taking on rivals Heinkel and Messerschmitt.

Even today, with the advent of the Mercedes Smart car, manufacturers realise the importance of having a small economical city car available.

With folding roof and wrap around rear window, the driver and passenger entered via a front hinged door that also lifted the steering wheel when opened. Built with 4 wheels for the local market, some 3 wheel versions were manufactured for the export market.

Powered by BMW's 247 or 297 cc single cylinder motor, the vehicle had a top speed over 50 mph and was the forebear to such vehicles as the BMW 600 and 700.

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