I found this similar-looking bubble car from a 1972 efficiency competition, see page 83. (Wankel-powered)
http://books.google.com/books?id=8v2VW0 ... &q&f=false
And here's a nice report from the genesis of BMW's i-car program...
http://www.caranddriver.com/news/bmw-e1 ... t-car-news
and the future that may not come, the CA-MIEV
http://www.caranddriver.com/news/mitsub ... -info-news
And much more at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIEV#History