For Sale: 1958 BMW 600 in Port Clinton, Ohio

Vehicle Description

One of the finest examples of the BMW 600. 

Has won "BEST in Show" at every show entered.

This 1958 BMW Isetta 600 is finished in a two-tone blue and white and equipped with US market lighting and bumpers. The car was restored the car in 2014, including a repaint and reupholstering of the interior, as well as refurbishment of the engine, transmission, and brakes.  This two-door Isetta is offered with the  a copy of the original service manual (written in  German), and a clean Ohio title in the seller’s name.

The car was purchased in 2018 followed by a service, tuning, and worn bushing replacement making the car very "road-worthy" and reliable.  The previous owner refurbished the engine, transmission, and brakes.  The seller rebuilt the carburetor, installed new gaskets, installed NOS rubber half shaft bushings (4 total), installed new brake shoes, performed an alignment, and replaced most bulbs.  The most recent service was performed in 2019 and included a fuel flush and new battery.

The paint and finish are in near excellent condition as shown in the photographs.

The car has one numerous awards, most recently "best in show" at the Put-In Bay Road Race Reunion last year.  Every event the car is entered results in a trophy.

The Isetta 600 features a 66.9″ wheelbase, which is more than a foot longer than the standard Isetta 300.  The car was repainted by the previous owner in two-tone white and blue with matching blue wheels.  This example is equipped with standard US-market lighting and tubular bumper overriders, and very rare BMW hubcaps.

The 600 has two doors, one at the front and one at the right rear for rear seat passengers.  The side windows open by sliding fore and aft rather than rolling up and down.

The interior is upholstered in white vinyl with contrasting blue cloth on the seat faces.  The exposed steering column passes through the cabin, and the lower casting forms the pedal mount.

The 5-digit odometer shows 22k miles.

Power comes from a 26 horsepower 582cc boxer-twin mated to a 4-speed manual transaxle.  

ISETTA HISTORY - The car originated with the Italian firm of Iso SpA.  In the early 1950s the company was building refrigerators, motor scooters and small three-wheeled trucks.  Iso's owner, Renzo Rivolta, decided to build a small car for mass distribution.  By 1952 the engineers Ermenegildo Preti and Pierluigi Raggi had designed a small car that used the motorcycle engine of the Iso Moto 200 and named it “ISETTA” - an Italian diminutive meaning little iso.

In the mid-1950s, he started to develop a miniature car for two persons and front entrance, initially with only three wheels, later, for reasons of stability, with four wheels - the Isetta Bubble Car.  About 20,000 of the bubble cars were built at the Iso works near Milan. 

The most successful, however, was the German Isetta built by BMW.  The BMW-Isetta went on to dwarf the production volumes of Iso and become one of the best-selling German microcars in the 1950s and 1960s.  About 130,000 had been sold by 1962.

BMW HISTORY - The BMW 600 is a four-seater microcar produced by the German automaker BMW from mid-1957 until November 1959.  Partially based on the BMW Isetta two-seater, it was BMW's first postwar four-seater economy car.  It was not a sales success, but it began the design process for its more successful successor, the BMW 700.

The BMW 600 was intended as an enlarged Isetta with more power and a more conventional four-wheel configuration.

The front end of the 600 was virtually unchanged from the Isetta, but the 600's wheelbase was stretched to accommodate four seats.  A conventional rear axle was added.  BMW introduced the semi-trailing arm independent suspension on the 600.  Because of the increased size and weight, the 600 had a more powerful engine than the Isetta.  The 600 had the 582 cc twin engine from the R67 motorcycle.  Top speed was 103 km/h (64 mph).

600 LEGACY - The 600 played a direct role in the design of its successor, the BMW 700.  - Another legacy of the 600 was its independent semi-trailing arm rear suspension.  This was BMW's first use of this suspension system and, with the exception of the BMW M1, it was used on every BMW production automobile until the 1990s.  It was eventually supplanted by the "Z-axle" multi-link suspension introduced with the BMW Z1 in 1988.  The last BMW cars with semi-trailing arm suspension were the BMW Compact and the BMW Z3.

SPACE EFFICIENCY - The BMW 600 was noted in magazine and journal articles as an example of space efficient design.  It was noted for carrying four people within a shorter length than that of the Mini.

Vehicle Details

  • Listing ID:CC-1379384
  • Price:$38,000 (OBO)
  • Location:Port Clinton, Ohio
  • Year:1958
  • Make:BMW
  • Model:600
  • Exterior Color:Blue/White
  • Interior Color:Blue/White
  • Transmission:Manual
  • Odometer:22000
  • Title Status:Clear
  • Restoration History:Fully Restored
  • Exterior Condition:Excellent
  • Engine History:Rebuilt
  • Engine Condition:Running