The Microlino, a retro EV inspired by the classic Isetta microcar, is getting a redesign despite not having gone on sale yet.
Now dubbed Microlino 2.0, the tiny EV is scheduled to appear at the 2020 Geneva Motor Show.
A redesign was necessary in order to meet certain internal safety standards, according to a press release from Micro Mobility, the car's manufacturer. That necessitated changing the vehicle's structure and increasing the rear track width, along with all of its overall dimensions.
In addition, Micro Mobility said it redesigned the interior and gave the Microlino a more powerful electric motor. The company hasn't published updated specifications. In its original form, the Microlino had a 20-horsepower motor, granting it a top speed of 55 mph. Micro Mobility said the original price of $13,600 will not change.
First shown in 2016, the Microlino is a modern, all-electric homage to the Isetta, a microcar designed to economically remobilize Europe after the devastation of World War II.
Micro Mobility Microletta
The original Isetta was designed by Italian firm Iso, which later built the Grifo and Rivolta sports cars. But it's probably better known as a BMW, as the German firm built far more cars under license than Iso itself did.
Micro Mobility recently concluded a legal battle with Artega, which attempted to market its own version of the Microlino after acquiring Micro Mobility's body supplier.
The redesigned Microlino will be displayed in Geneva alongside a concept electric scooter called the Microletta, which has a top speed of 49 mph. That would normally require a motorcycle license in Europe, according to Micro Mobility; the company circumvented it by giving the Microletta two front wheels, similar to the Toyota I-Road.
That means the Microletta won't be classified as a motorcycle and thus requires only a conventional driver's license, according to Micro Mobility. It also means the scooter can stand up by itself at stoplights.
The company plans to put the Microletta into production, with a starting price of $5,380. While Micro Mobility is taking non-binding reservations, the company said it does not have a firm date for the start of production. It plans to concentrate on the launch of the Microlino first.
Micro Mobility plans to sell the Microlino in Europe and China, but not the United States, in part because it is unlikely the car would pass U.S. crash tests.