BMW Eyes Micromini Market

Frank Williams
by Frank Williams

Although Isetta fans need not get too excited, CARSguide reveals that BMW is considering developing a car more mini than MINI, based on the MINI. BMW has ordered work on prototypes of a car smaller than anything they currently offer, in hopes of helping lower the company's CO2 emissions fleet average. As evidenced by Fiat's initial success with its resurrected Cinquecento, Europe's "city car" segment is growing fast. As European manufacturers face rising gas prices, tighter emission standards and burdensome taxes on their products, the supermini class should continue to expand. What's next, a Euro-kei car?

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  • AKM AKM on Aug 03, 2007

    As Fiat goes, the new panda is a fantastic drive! The interior is a bit bleh, but it rides very well for a car this size, although sidewinds in the highway are a bit scary. Very good handling...and the 4x4 Panda is a firm favorite of mountain guides, sheep raisers, and other mountain professions, as it can crawl pretty much everywhere. Now, a car smaller than the Mini would be very small indeed. It would need to shrink to Smart/500 size, and those, while driving decently, make too many compromises to interior space, IMHO.

  • Robert Schwartz Robert Schwartz on Aug 03, 2007

    OMG, my grandfather had one of those, for a little while at any rate. His daily driver was a Caddy. I would be terrified to drive one of those in the modern American traffic mix. Maybe if you were allowed to use the bike paths.

  • Slow_Joe_Crow Slow_Joe_Crow on Aug 03, 2007

    Landcrusher, BMW is already there in some ways because several "cabin motorcycles" use BMW motorcycle engines and components. The Swiss, and extremely expensive Ecomobile immediately comes to mind, since it uses a K1200 engine, drivetrain and rear suspension. Mass production would probably bring the price down to a more reasonable level since these are hand made and require purchasing a donor motorcycle.

  • VLAD VLAD on Aug 03, 2007

    Those were fun, we used to roll them on purpose before people got afraid of leaving their couch.