502 Big Block Chevy Powered Isetta Dragster Makes 730HP

If you’re too young or a little too over the hill, chances are you probably don’t remember the ’90s hit TV show, “Family Matters.” If that doesn’t ring any bells, then Steve Urkel, the nerdy clumsy-ridden character played by Jaleel White should. Urkel’s character was a memorable one and drove an even more memorable vehicle in the show. A vintage BMW Isetta.

Specifications:

  • Manufacturers: (Body) Bayerische Motoren Werke
  • Origin: Munich, Germany
  • Production: 1
  • Motor: Supercharged Chevrolet V-8
  • Displacement: 502 cu. in.
  • Power: est. 730 hp
  • Length: 12 ft. 4 in.
  • Identification No. N/A

The strange, sub-compact micro car had only one door, which opened at the front of the car with the steering wheel and column swinging out to allow passengers entry.

It was an odd car to say the least especially considering it wore the symbol of the Bavarian powerhouse, BMW. Of course, it’s fairly obvious that this Isetta isn’t the one Steve Urkel drove during the show nor is it an example of what came from the factory.

We got wind of this special Isetta, set to hit the auction block over at RM Auctions. It’s expected to hit $100,000.

This one is a one-of-a-kind, fully functioning, 730 horsepower creation of Hot Wheels’ famed model 1959 BMW Isetta “Whatta Drag.” With only one version of these fantasy pieces available, Whatta Drag is perhaps the most recognizable. The concept was based on a heavily-modified BMW Isetta bubble car, however, powered by a supercharged 502ci big-block Chevy.

While the car is mostly fantasy, we assure you the engine is anything but. Power is provided by a totally unconventional 502ci big-block Chevy crate engine. What’s more, it has been topped with a BDS supercharger and twin Holley 750cfm double-pumper carburetors. To expel the volumes of exhuast, the big-block was also fitted with Zoomie pipes, essentially open headers with the ability to shoot flames over four feet. Of course, it’s all done on pump gas, making this Isetta a completely streetable dragster.

Power is transmitted via a two-speed manual transmission, and the dual circuit disc brake system also incorporates an AP balance bar for burnouts and donuts. In keeping with its BMW roots, the suspension is from an M3; the chromed five-spoke front tires use the BMW roundel logo and are shod with B.F. Goodrich G-Force tires. The single rear wheel is a custom 18 inch by13 inch drag racing wheel with a Sumitomo HTRZ II tire. The big-block powered Isetta is finished in bright orange with a large Hot Wheels decal on top of the spoiler and utilizes chrome five-spoke wheels.

About the author

Sean Haggai

The former Associate Editor of Chevy High Performance, joins publication Chevy Hardcore, Sean is a true blue Bow Tie guy and a core do-it-yourself technician. If it doesn't run a "mouse motor" or a big rat between fenders, Sean ain't interested.
Read My Articles

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