Why The Little Peel P50 Is Worth Big Money Today

Without question, the BMW Isetta or Smart Fortwo are considered small for obvious reasons. However, the legendary P50 will shatter all your expectations of a genuinely diminutive and street-legal road car. It was the car that Jeremy Clarkson drove in an unforgettable segment on "Top Gear," taking the P50 from a quiet car park in London to the BBC studios and beyond.

The hilarious clip not only made us hold our breath as a 6-foot and five-inch Clarkson squeezed his lanky frame inside the single-seat P50. But it made us rethink how people should use their everyday cars. Measuring no more than 54 inches long and 40 inches wide, the Peel P50 is officially the world's smallest production car.

The original P50 was born in the 1960s on the Isle of Man by the Peel Engineering Company. It came with a 49cc single-cylinder DKW engine from a moped that produced four horsepower, enough to transport Clarkson on busy London streets and inside the BBC studio grounds. Production was from 1962 to 1965, each with an affordable £199 base price.

How much is an original Peel P50 today?

Before browsing classic car lots for an original Peel P50, here's what you should know. According to the Audrain Auto Museum, Peel only made 47 units of the P50 from 1962 to 1965. Moreover, less than 30 are still running today, making it one of the rarest cars in our book. So considering how rare it is, prepare to spend big money if you insist on adding a Peel P50 to your garage.

In 2016, a 1964 Peel P50 sold for a whopping $176,000 to a lucky buyer in Florida, incredible numbers for an iconic small car. But, if you think that's rich, there's more: Someone in the UK purchased a 1963 Peel P50 for £111,000 ($136,000) in 2022.

We have good news if you desire to own the world's smallest car without fear of damaging your bank account. Production for the Peel P50 recommenced in 2011, and the existing lineup consists of the original P50 Mk1, a P50 Cabrio, and a glass bubble-top Trident variant. In addition, you can get updated four-stroke gasoline powertrains or an all-electric model with single or dual electric motors, all for under £20,000 or $24,000.