In 2016, two brothers from Switzerland presented an electric city car, the design of which was inspired by the iconic Iseta – right up to the front door.
Known as Microlino, the beautiful two-seater Oliver and Marilyn Obotter are the result of their desire to free up space in the cities and promote eco-friendly dynamics in a way that they described as “fun and cool.”
The Obota brothers have since formed a micro company and partnered with the Turin, Italy-based Cecomp to manage Microlino’s production. The last pre-production example has been made and Micro is on its way to start customer delivery of Microlino this summer.
Delivery will initially be in Switzerland only. Italy and Germany will join later this year, and Micro expects delivery to the rest of Europe by the end of 2023. Availability in other markets has not been announced.
In full production, a microlino will be removed from the line every 20 minutes. Micro says about 80% of the stock comes from Europe, mostly from Italy.
Prices start at 14,990 euros (about $ 15,660), which lets you trim the base urban version for a 55-mile range with a 6-kilowatt-hour battery. On top of that there are 10.5- and 14-kwh options, providing 108 and 143 miles, respectively. In each case, the power comes from a 15-hp electric motor that will enable a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour, meaning the Microlino is only for city driving.
Although there is already a lot of interest with 30,000 reservations, the building car that Micro first discovered is not an easy business. The company finally misses its original 2018 timeline for starting production, although the good news is that the delay means the company can re-engineer the car to make it significantly safer.
The original design features a steel tubular frame chassis, the updated design features a stiffer and more rigid unibody structure made from pressed steel and aluminum. Interestingly, no weight was added to the new design, the car was claimed to have a carb weight of 1,095 pounds with the smallest battery, an increase of 1,180 pounds with the largest battery.
What is impressive about the Microlino is that it is about 8.0 feet long. This means you can fit their three parked noses in the space usually taken by a car. Microlino has a simple 10.6 cubic feet of space in the trunk.
With rising inflation, affordable Microlino is likely to be a cult classic, just as the Isetta and the original Fiat 500 did in the 1950s.