The last Iso Isetta was built in 1958, the same year the VELAM Isetta disappeared from production lines. The ROMI-Isetta produced its last vehicle in 1961, while the last BMW Isetta emerged in 1962. All these names refer basically to the same car, the one created for Iso in 1952 by the Italian engineer Ermenegildo Preti. Even if it is today a classic vehicle, its concept may live on and be available to new buyers as a new vehicle. This is what the Swiss company Micro Mobility Systems intends to do until 2017, when it aims to start delivering the first units of the Microlino.
The idea comes from Wim Ouboter, creator of the Micro Scooter, an electric device that has a 12 km range and has been quite successful worldwide.
His bubble car is admittedly inspired by Iso Isetta, even if in a new body, able to pass crash tests of up to 50 km/h, as modern regulations require. And the company has just finished its first prototype, as the video and the following picture prove.
The car is being developed with the help of Designwerk, to create the style of the new car and the body structure. And it will be a full electric car, with its engine being supplied by Linde.
The electronic management will be created by a Swiss company, called MicroBeam, and the car will be manufactured in China, for more competitive production costs. It will be outsourced to Kand Technologies. We are not aware on which company will supply the batteries, only that they will be of the Lithium-ion kind, able to deliver 11 kWh.
With such batteries, the Microlino, which is expected to have a 400 kg weight, will have a range of around 120 km, with a top speed of 100 km/h. It is not clear if it will be sold as a regular car, able to run on roads, or if it will be a sans permis sort of vehicle, one that people with no driving licenses and older than 16 years old can drive in Europe.
The first running prototype will be shown in February 2016, probably a little earlier than the Geneva Motor Show, where it must be publicly presented for the first time, and Micro Mobility Systems intends to start selling it in the first quarter of 2017, but initially only in China, where it will be produced.
The car will eventually reach Europe, where the company plans to sell it for a price between 8,000 and 10,000 euros. It will retain its single door, at the front of the vehicle, one of the most distinctive features of the Iso Isetta. But now a lot safer, cleaner and much more efficient.