1959 Goggomobil Dart

The Goggomobil was a hybrid German-Australian car built in Australia between 1958
and 1961.

The project was launched in Sydney by Bill Buckle who had earlier built and sold his
own design, the Buckle coupe. For the Goggomobil, Buckle secured the rights to a
small car made by Hans Glas of Dingolfing, Bavaria.

The German product had an all-steel body but Buckle fitted his cars with fibreglass
bodies. He offered three body styles: sedan, coupe and open two-seater

The open version, known as the Dart, was Buckle’s own design but, like the sedan
and coupe, it used imported Goggomobil components. No doors were fitted but the
sides were so low the occupants could step over them. A tiny 395 cc two-cylinder
engine was located in the rear and a small luggage
compartment was built into the nose

The Dart weighed only 345 kg and was powered by a 13-kW engine The maximum
road speed was only about 90 km/h but, because of its low gearing, the tiny sports
car was capable of remarkable acceleration.

Buckle sold a total of 5000 Goggomobil sedans, coupes and Darts before 1961 when
the Mini Minor arrived in Australia. The Mini was more modern and powerful but sold
at virtually the same price thereby spelling the end for the Goggomobil,

Unlike the Buckle and almost every other Australian car of this type the Goggomobil
was a profitable enterprise. Once described as looking like `an eggshell on wheels’ it
is now keenly sought by collectors.


About Alistair Kennedy

Alistair Kennedy is Automotive News Service and Marque Publishing's business manager and the company's jack-of-all-trades. An accountant by profession, he designs the Marque range of motoring book titles, operates the company's motoring bookshop on the NSW Central Coast and the associated web site, as well as its huge digital and hard copy database. Whenever we can escape from the office he does so to cover new vehicle releases and contributes news stories. Alistair's other interests include cricket and family history on which he has written three books.
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