<!--"AMCA Troupes Aeról Portées Mle. 56" doesn't mean anything. Probably intended to be "ACMA Troupes Aéroportées, modèle 1956", which appears to be untractable for English speakers anyway. Hence renamed to "Vespa 150 VAT"
The Vespa 150 TAP
is an Italian Vespa
scooter modified to transport a M20 75 mm recoilless rifle
, which was used in the 1950s by the French Airborne Forces
(Troupes aéroportées, or TAP). It was produced by Ateliers de Construction de Motocycles et Automobiles (ACMA), a licensed assembler of Vespas in France
, in 1956 and 1959.
Its mounted M20
, a U.S.-made light anti-armour cannon, was very light when compared to a standard 75mm cannon but was still able to penetrate 100 mm of armour by so-called HEAT
warhead. The recoil
is counteracted by venting propellant gases out the rear of the weapon which eliminated the need for a mechanical recoil system or heavy mounts, enabling the weapon to be fired from the Vespa frame.
The scooters would be parachute
-dropped in pairs, accompanied by a two-man team. The gun was carried on one scooter, while the ammunition was loaded on the other. Due to the lack of any kind of aiming devices the recoilless rifle
was never designed to be fired from the scooter, the gun was mounted on a tripod
which was also carried by the scooter, before being fired.
The "Bazooka Vespa" was relatively cheap: Vespas cost roughly $
500 at the time, and the M20s were plentiful.Roughly 800... Read More