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1953 Fuldamobil N-2

The amusingly rotund Fuldamobil qualifies as probably the longest-built microcar. However, in its near-twenty year production run, a mere three thousand examples were built. Nor was the production of small vehicles a prime focus for the company, which produced electrical devices, and was a distributor for Bosch.

Immediately after the war, director Carl Schmitt employed freelance designer Norbert Stevenson to design his concept for a microcar. The earliest prototypes, with their flat angular shapes were not unlike miniature trailer caravans, but were built on heavy tube frames featuring technically interesting center point steering. A glider company made the heavy, solid body work of wood. These Type N models were covered in vinyl and utilized a Baker & Polling chainsaw motor.

The search for a more suitable motor continued, and the Fichtel & Sachs 360cc stationary engine enabled the new Type N-2 to finally hit 80 kph. The wooden body work was now covered with a distinctive hammered aluminum sheet, prompting the nickname "Silver Flea". A smooth aluminum painted finish was also available. The heavy, well-detailed body work, similar to good furniture construction with thick, sliding glass windows, was very labour intensive. The nickname, soft ride, and roomy cabin brought market success, and designer Norbert Stevenson set about reducing the extensive hand-fabrication costs. This he achieved with the S-series, which utilized a large, bulbous, aluminum body shell.

This rare, well-known vehicle came from a museum in Germany.

Manufacturer: Elektromaschinenbau Fulda Germany

Model: N-2 Motor: Fichtel & Sachs, 2-stroke Body: Wood and Aluminum
Years Built: Sep. 1952 – Aug. 1955 No. Cylinders: 1 Chassis: Tube
No. Produced: 380 Displacement: 359cc Suspension Front: Trans Leaf
No. Surviving: 3 Horsepower: 9.5 Suspension Rear: Coil
Length: 2850 mm Gearbox: Hurth 3 + rev Steering: Chain and Gear
Width: 1397 mm Starter: Dynastart Brakes: Cable, front only
Weight: 305 kg Electrics: 6 v 3 Wheels: 4.00 x 8"
Interior: Bench Ignition: Coil Top Speed: 80 kph

© 2002