1959/60 Vespa 400

In the Spring of 2018 I found a couple of Vespa 400 microcars for sale on Craigslist in Houston. The Vespa company, knowing that Fiat dominated the Italian microcar market, licensed the manufacturing out to the ACMA factory in France. Over 3 years, 26,000 were made. Of those, only 1,000 were ever imported to the United States. I was extremely lucky to find two of these rarities, and though there is a lot of rust, they both still have the original glass and the frame is solid. This is going to be a fun project.

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Tiny Car; big Style

With the Vespa 400 having been made in such small numbers, it is a rare piece of history that just oozes style. The Vespa 400 is a convertible model only, to save money on metal used.

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1 Gas & 1 Electric

My goal is to be able to piece together one working original engine from the parts between the two of them. After that, I’m going to add an electric motor to the other. If I’m unable to make an original engine out of the parts, I’ll drop a motorcycle engine in with more than 400cc.

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tiny house & tiny car

As you can see here, the floor pans are rusted into swiss-cheese. Any area where water pooled is rusted and a few of the connectors to the frame supports have rusted as well. This will be a big project and will take some time, but it will be well worth it to complement the bus.