Everyone remembers watching the iconic (if frequently annoying) character of Steve Urkel on the sitcom Family Matters. One aspect associated with the character–as much as his suspenders and “Did I do that?” catch phrase–was the dinky little car he drove. Many mishaps took place in, around, and because of that tiny, bizarre vehicle. In fact, that’s probably the only place most people have seen a BMW Isetta.
If you’ve ever wanted your own Urkel car, try making the BMW Isetta papercraft model using the template below!
Instructions for Creating a BMW Isetta Papercraft
Easily the oddest and most atypical vehicle in BMW’s history is the Italian-design microcar: the Isetta. This single-cylinder “bubble car” was the first mass-produced vehicle to achieve a fuel efficiency rate of over 90 mpg–making it a hit in Europe. However, we in the United States know it best as the geeky, laughable mode of transportation by Steve Urkel.
To make your own 1/30th scale model of a BMW Isetta 300, print out the template above (linked to the picture): one page has directions and the other is the pieces. The documents come from Ichiyama’s Paper Cards, which features a gallery of impressive papercraft designs. The instructions are in Japanese, but generally self-explanatory.
Cut the pieces out based on their labeled numbers and follow the step-by-step directions. A couple tips:
- Red lines you cut, and blue lines you fold.
- Take your time and make sure you don’t cut off any of the tabs–you’ll need those!
- Try using an X-Acto knife for the more precise cuts.
- The model is too small for a glue stick so try using crafter’s glue and a cotton swap to dab the liquid.
The project, though daunting and frustrating at times, results in a rewarding and stylish final product. This white Isetta 300 has some staggeringly precise curves and looks great from any angle. If you haven’t given up and crumpled up your work before completing it, congratulations!
Now, perhaps you’re ready to move onto the next papercraft: a 2007 BMW M6 Coupe.
God be with you.