Military moped

The diminutive Vespa scooter was an unlikely tank destroyer but it proved to be surprisingly effective

‘The Vespa TAP could carry two people and pull a small one- wheeled trailer’

Note the front rack for carrying two cans of fuel, and the surrounding tubular bumper-guard
PHOTO COURTESY OF THE PIAGGIO MUSEUM, PONTEDERA, ITALY.

A vintage ice cream or sherbet-coloured Italian Vespa scooter might be the last image which comes to mind when contemplating classic military vehicles. But so successful, reliable and durable did the Vespa prove to be, that the maker designed a military model which had a beefed-up frame and carried a recoilless rifle: the Vespa 150 Troupes Aéro Portées (TAP).

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