Isdera GmbH or Ingenieurbüro für Styling, Design und Racing (Engineering Company for Styling, Design and Racing) is a privately run automaker based in a small workshop in Hildesheim, Germany. The company was formerly based in Leonberg, Germany. Each high-performance sports car is hand-built by a small team of craftsmen, and the only way to purchase a brand new Isdera was to call the CEO directly. Each vehicle is custom built for its original buyer, and a waiting period of six months is to be expected.
The first vehicle designed by Eberhard Schulz appeared in 1969. It was Erator GTE, the replica of Ford GT40 race car. In 1978 Mercedes-Benz presented the concept car CW 311, engineered by Schulz and promoted by the b&b company.
The company Isdera was founded in 1981 in Leonberg. Its first car, the Spyder 033, was presented in 1982. Some other vehicles in the company's history are the 1985 Spyder 033-16, 1987 Spyder 036i and the 1984 Isdera Imperator 108i. Each model was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, Switzerland.
In 1993 Isdera designed the Commendatore 112i, which weighed 1,450 kg (3,197 lb), could go 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds, and had a top speed of 342 km/h (213 mph). The car had a mid-mounted Mercedes-Benz 6.0 L V12 engine producing 402 hp (300 kW) and a 6-speed manual transmission. The Commendatore had many advanced and unique features such as two sets of gull-wing doors, a velocity-sensitive electronic chassis that lowers the car at high speeds, and an automatic air brake. The 112i was featured in the video game Need for Speed II.
An estimated 70 cars have been sold by Isdera since 1983. Projects since 1993 have been kept top secret by Isdera. The company’s most recent automotive ventures and sales figures have not been released to the general public.
In 1999, Isdera produced a fully functional prototype called the Silver Arrow C112i. The vehicle shared the same body and chassis as the 1993 Commendatore 112i, but was powered by a Mercedes-Benz, 611 hp (456 kW) V12. The car's top speed was recorded at 230 mph (370 km/h). At the time of its introduction, the Silver Arrow was the only car in the world to feature an automatically lifting airbrake.
The Silver Arrow prototype was offered for sale on eBay in October 2005 for US$3 million, but was not sold. At the time of the auction, the car was located in Switzerland.
In 2006, Isdera introduced the Autobahnkurier AK116i, a controversially styled vehicle powered by two Mercedes-Benz V8 engines - one for each axle - from the W126-500SE, and reminiscent of a 1930s touring car.
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