Isetta Hoard in Canada

Isetta Collection

During college I spent many hours exploring the small town of Laramie, Wyoming. I was actually on the hunt for a good storage unit, but that’s a whole other story. As I was pulling into a storage facility on the south end of town, I spotted the most unusual of cars to be hiding in Wyoming. As I started to look closer, I discovered there wasn’t just one odd ball, but an entire field full of them! There before me was the single largest collection of BMW Isettas I had ever seen – I counted 15 in total. I didn’t have my camera with me, but I figured I would be back a few months later and I could get photos then. That was a bad choice, because when I returned all but two of the Isettas were gone. I just assumed I would never see such a sight ever again, but that was until I had a look at Dimitris K’s latest submission. This collection of BMW Isettas might not be as large as the one I witnessed in Wyoming, but there are certainly plenty of these tiny oddballs in there. The collection is located in Canada and is listed for sale here on TooToo.

BMW Isettas in Canada

I still remember the first time I saw an Isetta, it was driven by the tv character Steve Urkel on Family Matters. I was fascinated by that odd little car, mostly because of the usual swing open front end. Until I spotted the collection in Laramie, I had never actually seen an Isetta in person and they turned out to be even odder than I could have imagined. The overall shape and size is something you just have to see in person to fully appreciate.

Isetta 600

It appears that these cars are all in need of restoration, but given the amount of parts, I’m sure a few complete cars could be built from this stash. Most of the cars are the small and popular 300 model, but the seller also has the larger 600. I can’t imagine there are many of the four seater 600s left. This one is going to need a complete restoration, but would make for an interesting project.

Isetta 300 in Pieces

Part of me has always wondered what happened to all those Isettas I found, but I hope they all went to good homes and didn’t just ended up in a collection like this one. I actually wouldn’t be surprised if a few ended up in this collection. I’m not sure what will end up happening to all of these cars either, but hopefully someone will at least put some of the parts to good use! So who here would like to have this hoard of Isettas in their backyard?

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Comments

  1. Lindsay

    This hoard has been for sale since 2012. They were taking bids on the lot and wouldn’t give any kind of price guideline. Still no price listed, I wonder what would take them.

  2. Dolphin Dolphin Member

    A horde of 14 Isettas somewhere in Ontario, Canada advertised on a Greek website.

    I understand the importance of the Isetta in the history of microcars generally and BMW in particular, but ‘WHY?’ applies to these on a few different levels.

    • skloon

      But honey I advertised them for sale for a year, I guess I was meant to keep them

      • Dolphin Dolphin Member

        I’m assuming you are the skloon who has posted on other sites and that you don’t own the cars.

      • Eric

        Hello are you the one selling the isettas in Ontario?

  3. Lindsay

    Totally weird that they were posted on a Greek website. I emailed the seller a few times when she originally posted them for sale on Kijiji two years ago and she was a bit strange.

  4. Richard Lewis

    there was a large number of Isettas in SoCal a few years back. I believe there were 16 cars purchased in the batch. These were purchased and restored by Isettadude to a high level. My non-running Isetta roller I sold for about $10,000. My restored Isetta went at Barrett Jackson for $43,000 plus buyers fee.

  5. rusty

    Hee hee thank god lindsay you thought she was a bit strange because she must have been from the original microcar hoarder days.the good ol days..we liked to think we were eccentric..or strange…a badge of honor. Those days are gone.

    in fact was the current baby boomer collectors who changed the scene to trendy and help make my decision to get out out of micros and all cars.

    bring back the strange owners.

  6. Vladimir

    All BMW isetta and BMW 600 in Laramie, Wyoming have been sold on ebay . Here is one pic.

  7. Eric

    I want the red Citi Car way in the back

  8. Lindsay

    Oh I like strange – I’ve got 2 old microcars myself so there’s clearly something off P:

    What I thought was weird is that the seller wouldn’t give any prices! I live very close to where they are and was genuinely interested.

    • gary

      Lindsay, what microcars do you have? And are you in Ontario?

      • lindsay

        Yep I’m in Ontario. I have a 1959 NSU Prinz 2 & a 1962 Prinz 3.

    • Gary

      Wow totally missed the reply!

      Lindsay, how do you even find microcars for sale? If you’re near Ottawa I would love to see your cars!

  9. Bobby D

    Is that a Citicar in the background?

    • Don Andreina

      I’d say yes. Good spotting.

  10. Chuck F (55chevy)

    Wow, what a weird thread. Two connections for me, in summer 1974 I went to Las Vegas with a buddy’s uncle to drive a car back to NE Indiana since he was moving to Indiana, I drove his wife in a 67 or so 4 door Lincoln, he had a box truck with their possessions, and hired a hitch hiker (Rollie Fingers) from Compton CA to drive a 70s Jap pickup, Nissan or Mazda, dont remember but we went to Vegas in it from Indiana. Along the way I asked his wife did she know why cars had two mufflers? No, she said, and I replied, one for the backseat driver. It shut her up for a couple hours. Well going up a big hill east of Laramie Wyoming the box truck blew the engine, and Rollie and I got to camp out for three days in a Abe Lincoln National Park in the mountains (Statue of Abe) while Uncle Bill and Motormouth stayed in Laramie and a shop fixed the truck, pretty cool road trip for a high school sophomore. There was a ski area called Happy Jack it seems like in the area, Laramie was a small college town at the time.

    Second connection, after that I worked in a City Engineering Dept in my small Indiana town, there was an older guy than me I worked with who was also a draftsman, and he had bought a nice Isetta. Only problem was he was a druggie glue sniffer, and I went by his apartment one day and the Isetta was in pieces, don’t remember why he tore it apart, (glue) but I’m sure it ended up in a scrap yard.

  11. Charles

    We have some fond Isetta memories.

    Around 1959 Dad bought a 59 Buick Invicta wagon from Denver Buick in CO. Denver Buick had an odd sale for a short time. Purchase a new Buick and get an Isetta 300 free. At that time a 300 sold for around $700.00. It seems that the little cars dis not sell well new, and this dealer was just trying to get them gone from inventory. Dad used the little car to commute to the missile sites out in the Rockies. Dad worked on the crew that assembled the Titan II rockets with warheads aimed at our enemies during the cold war. The little Isetta 300 proved to be a very versatile little car. Dad was 6 foot four inches and had plenty of room in a 300. We would go into downtown Denver and he would park in spots that were too small for regular cars. He would pull in sideways placing the door on the curb. One could step out onto the side walk without stepping in the street and getting their feet wet from the snow and ice that was typical in Denver in those days from Labor Day until early June. Yeah, winters are more mild these days then they were in the early 60’s.

    Dad traded the 300 for an BMW 600 as our family grew. I remember the 600 in California. I remember a mudslide that stranded the Buick in the garage, however Dad and several neighbors pushed the 600 through the mud and Dad parked it near the road until the crew had removed the mud from our yard. I was about 5 years old and remember opening the curtains in the master bedroom that morning to reveal 2 feet of mud against the sliding glass door.

    There was one more Isetta 300 that we owned when we returned to Denver. When we moved to Arkansas, Dad thought about loading onto the roof rack on the Buick wagon, but it was a little too heavy.He traded it for a Harley scooter, and hauled that in a U-haul back to California. When we left California for Indiana he traded the scooter for one of those Model T parade cars with a Briggs and Stratton engine on it. It did fit on the roof rack on the Buick and rode to Indiana that way. He traded the Model T for camping equipment that we wore out in Florida.

    Fast forward to 1970. We lived on Cocoa FL. Mom and Dad both worked for NASA contractors at Kennedy Space Center. I was 14 at the time. I delivered news papers and cut grass for money. I saved and bought a riding lawn tractor and developed a decent business. A fellow down the street had a 1957 Isetta 300. It was red and had a perfect body. No dents and no rust. He had removed the engine, had it rebuilt, and installed it back into the car. He could not get it to start, and finally gave up on it. He sold it to me for $50.00. My friends and I pushed it home. It took Dad and I about three days to get the little car back into running condition. The timing was way off. Of course I could not legally drive the Isetta at 14, but I could work on it.

    By the time I was 16 I had the muscle car bug and lost interest in the Isetta. I sold the little car to an uncle who lived on Merritt Island. I bought a 68 GMC stepside truck and promptly installed a 427 big-block, 4 speed Muncie, and a full floating diff. My aunt and uncle moved to Oregon and I lost track of the little car. My uncle was a turd and sold the little car to a friend never offering to sell it back to me.

  12. Bimmer Heaven

    So it looks like I was the one who ended up with that 600 from the Ontario collection! The seller had about 16 of the 300’s, but “wasn’t into the 600” so sold it. Needless to say that it needs a FULL restoration, and sourcing out many many missing parts, but it will get done!

  13. Charles

    Congrats! Please keep us updated on your progress.

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