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For sale: 730hp BMW Isetta dragster
As the Dragons mentioned on Sunday, Jeremy’s P45 faces some stiff competition. There are lots of micro cars out there - most notably Peel’s P50 - but also BMW’s Isetta. As Jeremy has mentioned before, one of the downfalls of the Isetta is that it has no reverse gear, so if you park in front of a wall, you can’t get out as the door’s at the front. Thankfully, someone’s overcome that showstopper… by building a 730hp V8-powered Isetta dragster powerful enough to plough through anything in front of it.
This dragster was initially a Hot Wheels die-cast toy from 1998 called ‘Whatta Drag’ designed by Phil Riehlman. Then microcar collector Bruce Weiner wanted a life-sized, fully-functioning version, so he put it in front of the ‘Honey I Blew Up The Kids’ machine in 2005.
The results? It’s built from the bodyshell of an original 1959 BMW Isetta, but with a new welded steel frame that extends its length to over 12ft. Then a 502-cubic inch (8.1-litre) Chevrolet “big block” crate engine, with a BDS supercharger, twin Holley 750 CFM double pumper carburetors, and Zoomies exhaust headers were thrown behind the driver. This gives out 730hp - 717hp more than the original Isetta - so in order to get that power down, a massive custom 18 inch by 13 inch drag racing wheel and tyre was been fitted.
The gearbox has been upgraded to a two-speed manual transmission (now with reverse), while a new circuit disc brake system, suspension from an M3 and an AP wheelie bar have been added so you aren’t sent skywards.
The car’s hitting the block on Saturday February 16 and is expected to go for between £47,600 - £63,000 - which is a lot more expensive than Jeremy’s £8,000 P45.
Hmmm. Could this inspire the P45 GTi?