20k: Not An Ape: 1961 Vespa 400 MicroCar

 From 1957 through 1961 ACMA (Ateliers de construction de motocycles et d’automobiles) built a microcar for Piaggio SpA under the name Vespa 400.  The 800 lb two seater had a small bench for kids/dogs/luggage in the back and was powered by a 2-stroke 2-cylinder motorcycle engine rated at 14 horsepower.  Find this 1961 Vespa 400 MicroCar offered for $19,750 in Mendocino County, CA via craigslist.  Tip from Kaibeezy.

The paint is chipped, the brightwork is dull, but the seller claims it is mechanically solid and microcars are “hot” right now.  Don’t know if it is worth $20k…but I’d certainly consider this a good buy versus a new Smart Car. 

The Vespa used a semi-automatic oiling mechanism (pictured to the right) in an attempt to convince buyers in 1958 that this was more than just a 4 wheeled motorcycle.  You could just run pre-mixed gas/oil if you didn’t want to deal with the external oil reservoir. 

See another museum escapee?  tips@dailyturismo.com