Messerschmitt Tg500 Tiger is a mini car that was build from 1957 to 1961, as a four-wheeled, high-performance version of Fritz Fend’s Messerschmitt car by a German company caled Messerschmitt. Messerschmitt was founded in 1923 by Willy Messerschmitt to build light airplanes, and by 1926 had expanded into transport planes, but after the Second World War a large part of the Messerschmitt plant had been destroyed, and in addition, Germany was prohibited from producing airplanes so they decided to build pretty unusual vehicles called bubble cars.
The advantage of the bubble car over the motorcycle or motor scooter was that they kept their occupants warm and dry. The disadvantages were that they looked odd, and usually had inferior performance.
The Messerschmitt Tg500 Tiger had an acceptable handling and a 90 mph top speed achieved by doubling the KR200s engine’s cylinders to two and the power to 20 hp. The car was not a commercial success, but it helped to show how little power is needed for good performance, when weight and air drag are carefully kept down.
Configuration: mid (rear) engine, rear drive
Seating, front/rear: 1/1
Weather protection: bubble canopy coupe, convertible or open roadster
Heating/air conditioning: Via Exhaust heat exchanger/none
Engine type: Fichtel & Sachs, 2 cylinder, 2 stroke
Displacement: 494 cc
Bore x stroke: 67 x 70 mm
Power: 19.5 hp @ 5,000 rpm
Torque: 24 ft-lbf
Cooling: air, with fan
Drive: 4 speed plus reverse transmission, and differential
Brakes: 4 wheel hydraulic
Wheel size: 4.40 by 10 in
Track, front/rear: 1.110/1.044
Fuel consumption: 36 (30) mi/U.S. gal.
Top speed: 90 mph
Time to 60 mph: 27.8 seconds