2016 Shannons Melbourne Winter Classic Auction

1960 Borgward Isabella Coupe




Engine In-line four-cylinder, 1493cc
Gearbox 4-speed manual
Body Work Coupe
Colour Gun Metal Grey
Interior Red
Trim Vinyl
Wheels Steel disc
Brakes Drums


This lot is no longer available

Based on Borgward’s high quality Isabella saloon, the coupe was a largely hand-made car produced in small numbers between 1957 and 1962, with few surviving to the present day. The coupe (and its cabriolet sibling) appealed to an altogether different market than the more prosaic saloons and featured elegant Trans-Atlantic styling, with lots of curves and plenty of chrome. Although based on the same mechanical underpinnings as the four-door Isabella, the coupe used the more powerful TS motor, with two Solex twin-choke carburettors and a useful 75 horsepower on tap. Power was delivered to the rear wheels via an innovative hydraulic clutch and a column-mounted four-speed all-synchromesh gearbox. With independent suspension using a swing axle at the rear, the Isabella Coupe handled nicely and proved a willing performer, with excellent road manners. The Isabella’s bespoke cabin was nicely appointed, with plenty of space for four adults to travel in comfort, the padded dashboard and large steering wheel both typically Germanic features. Just 9537 Isabella Coupes were made in total, largely thanks to the high price compared with contemporary rivals from Opel and Ford. With a strong following around the world and plenty of support from clubs both in Australia and overseas, ownership of an Isabella Coupe is certainly a rewarding experience and the car is certainly a highly individualistic alternative to other makes of the era. 

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