1961 Messerschmitt KR4200GP
Messerschmitt desired to build the fastest supercar for use on the German Autobahn in 1961 and partnered with Colin Chapman at Lotus in the UK to create it. Colin utilized the aerodynamic KR200 aviation inspired fiberglass “cabin scooter” with its unique opening roof structure and inline tandem style of seating with one of his proven lightweight heavily triangulated tubular frame gran prix chassis similar in construction to a Lotus 18 chassis. Engine is an early Ford 255ci (4200cc) V8 from the USAC/Indianapolis 500 program mated to a Lotus built sequential-shift “Queer box” transaxle with combined ZF differential. Wheels are wobbly-web disc wheels of Lotus design and cast in Elektron magnesium-aluminum alloy by Stone Foundries of Charlton. Saddle fuel tanks are rubber bladders on each side of the cockpit and have a total capacity of 40-liters.
Unfortunately the German TÜV would not approve the KR4200GP for general road use and thus it was sold off as a promotion and marketing tool for a towing service located in Regensburg, Germany for numerous years. After gathering dust and cobwebs in a corner it was eventually sold to a local mechanic given its rotted out fuel bladders and not being operational. Sadly it was stashed away and seemingly forgotten in a castle within Bavaria for the past 45+ years… or that is the creative story I’m going to tell everyone about what this is.