PEEL P50  

Built on the Isle of Man in 1963 by the Peel Engineering Company.
49cc engine
3 wheels
Single seat

Peel Engineering Company made less than a hundred of their P50 model (shown here) in 1963-64, following on from a prototype that was actually both shorter and narrower, and with the single wheel at the front. That prototype was never completed to the stage of being driveable, but it nevertheless survives and is included on the Register of Unusual Microcars, appearing at the National Microcar Rally in September 2000. Production P50 cars were all similar to the one pictured, though subtle variations did appear during the production run. Despite the minimal dimensions (4ft 5ins long, 3ft 3ins wide, 3ft10ins high), the Peel was a real car, intended for road use. Chassis were constructed of welded tubular steel, with bodies of glass reinforced plastic. Standard colours were Daytona White, Dragon Red, and Capri Blue.

The standard Peel P50 power unit was a 49cc Zweirad Union (part of the German DKW combine) two stroke moped engine. The gearbox provided three forward speeds, with reverse travel being accomplished by lifting the car with the chromed handle provided at the back, and manhandling as necessary - an easy single handed job with a car so small. Wheels were a mere five inches in diameter, fitted with Avon Kart tyres.

A single seat, constructed in hammock form over a steel tubular frame, occupied most of the interior space. The foot controls were of normal car type, and a hand lever was provided to start the engine, with gear selection via a quadrant mounted lever on the steering column. Instrumentation was non-existent, with even the speedometer being considered unnecessary on such a small vehicle.

Peel P50 cars have been exported to other countries during recent years, but most of the survivors have RUMCars registration.