The Rocket Launcher Scooter (Weird Tech) | Summary and Q&A

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April 20, 2021
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The Rocket Launcher Scooter (Weird Tech)

TL;DR

The Vespa 150 TAP was a modified version of the Vespa scooter with an attached anti-tank weapon, designed for use by French paratroopers in conflicts in Indochina and Algeria.

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Questions & Answers

Q: What was the purpose of creating the Vespa 150 TAP?

The Vespa 150 TAP was created to provide French paratroopers with a portable anti-tank weapon that could be deployed in situations where traditional heavy artillery support was not possible or too far away.

Q: How was the Vespa 150 TAP used in combat?

The Vespa 150 TAP would be dropped in with paratroopers, with one scooter carrying the M20 recoilless rifle and the other scooter carrying the ammunition. The weapon would be set up on a tripod and fired by a team of two men.

Q: What were the characteristics of the Vespa 150 TAP?

The Vespa 150 TAP had a top speed of 41 mph (66 km/h), a fuel range of 124 miles (200 km), and was equipped with a 146cc single-cylinder two-stroke engine. It had reinforced frames, lowered gear ratios, and could carry six rounds of ammunition.

Q: How effective was the Vespa 150 TAP in combat?

There is little information available on the effectiveness of the Vespa 150 TAP, but its lightweight and nimble design, coupled with the powerful 75mm round of the M20 recoilless rifle, made it capable of destroying tanks and engaging enemies at distances of 7000 yards (6401 meters).

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The Vespa 150 TAP was created in response to a request from the French Ministry of Defense for a portable anti-tank system for French paratroopers.

  • The scooter was modified to include an M20 75mm recoilless rifle, making it a maneuverable and quick weapon suitable for guerrilla tactics and situations where tanks or artillery support were unavailable.

  • The Vespa 150 TAP had a production run of three years (1956-1959) and approximately 600 units were produced, primarily in green camouflage or desert camouflage patterns.

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