The Goggomobil Dart was uniquely Australian. Bill Buckle, who had been fitting fibreglass bodies to the imported chassis and running gear of the Goggomobil sedan, enlisted the help of local engineer Stan Brown to design an open roadster iteration.
Taking design cues from more mainstream manufacturers, the Dart looked great, featuring rakish lines, E-Type Jaguar style headlights and even small but attractive tail fins.
Powered by the same 293 cc 2-cylinder 2-stroke 14.8 hp or 392 cc 2-cylinder 2-stroke 20 hp engines used in the sedan, the Dart weighed in at only 380 kg, and the little engines were able to propel the car (for those that were game) to a top speed of 100 km/h.
The Dart entered the market at a time when Australia was prospering, and while being extremely well priced, most snubbed the little car as being both silly and impractical. In the end only 700 Darts would be made.
But it was other, better built and more practical cars that would spell the end of the mini car era. Cars such as Sir Alexander Issigonis brilliant Mini
would redefine the genre, and the Australian micro-car era would come to a quick end.
But, with anything automotive and built in small numbers, the Goggomobil’s today are considered highly collectable, their survival harking back to a time when things were more simple – and there is nothing wrong with that.