Lot 340

Dare to Dream Collection

1957 BMW Isetta 300


$35,000 - $45,000 USD  | Offered Without Reserve

Canada | Toronto, Ontario



Available Lots Inquire Register to bid

Chassis No.
A 11752
Canadian Registration
To be offered on Saturday, 1 June 2024
  • Inspired by the well-known vintage racing paddock vehicle of Team Brecht
  • Charming restoration in iconoclastic BMW Motorsport livery
  • One of the most popular automobiles wherever it ventures
Please note, this lot is registered in Canada and import duty will be applicable to all countries outside of Canada, including the United States. RM Sotheby’s will assist buyers with importation and for residents of the USA, in obtaining a US title.

BMW’s Isetta, a happy little bubble powered by a motorcycle engine, is probably the best-remembered and most famous of the many post-war European microcars. Licensed by BMW from Italian manufacturer Iso, it was distinguished by its cheerful color schemes and, most memorably, its literal “front door,” in that the front of the car was also the door: the hinged steering column swung out of the way when the door was opened. It was hugely popular in Europe as economical transportation, and achieved a certain measure of fame in the United States and Canada for its “reverse snob appeal.” It was so cute that it became glamorous!

The Isetta 300 offered here is identified by its serial number plate as a UK-market example, manufactured by Isetta of Great Britain Ltd. of Brighton, Sussex, under license from BMW and Iso; it is likely one of very few UK examples in North America. Formerly owned by Robert Maitland of Alberta, Canada, it was subsequently restored in the image of the famed “mascot car” of Team Brecht, the racing team of prominent San Diego BMW dealer Bill Brecht, who utilized historic examples of his product in Sports Car Club of America and Vintage Auto Racing Association competition. Mr. Brecht’s mascot was a similar Isetta model, finished in white with classic diagonal BMW Motorsport stripes, even crossing the vinyl sunroof and echoed in the interior fabric. The same eye-catching livery was applied to this Isetta, albeit with a plain black fabric sunroof, and with slight alterations to the exterior trim. It makes for a car that is as much fun to look at as it is to drive.

Acquired for the Dare to Dream Collection in 2013, this striking Isetta remains in very good overall condition and still radiates the same unbeatable charm when new. It would certainly be the ideal paddock vehicle for any enthusiast of the Ultimate Driving Machine.