Powering the Messerschmitt is a 10 horsepower, 191cc Sachs two-stroke single-cylinder engine mated to a four-speed transmission (Forward and reverse.). There is an independent torsilastic rubber suspension and cable-operated mechanical drum brakes.
Messerschmitt AG was a German aircraft manufacturer, who was prohibited from building airplanes for many years following World War II. The company turned their attention to other endeavors, one of which was the production of kits for building prefabricated houses, using aluminum alloy techniques derived from the aircraft industry.
Fritz Fend, an aircraft engineer, designed and built a three-wheel invalid carriage called the Fend Flitzers. Around 250 examples were built through 1951, many of which were purchased by people needing simple mini-car transpiration. In 1952, a deal was struck with Messerschmitt. The factory in Regensburg, Germany assembled the vehicles and affixed Messerschmitt name. The first model was the KR175, the KR signifying kabinenroller or 'enclosed scooter' and 175 for the metric displacement of its two-stroke engine. They had a bubble canopy that tilted sideward for entry and exit and inside there was tandem seating.
In 1955, the KR200 was introduced. This had the 191cc two-stroke engine and an improved canopy and revised suspension. To reverse, the engine was merely re-started in the other direction, which provided four speeds backward as well as forward.
A modified KR200 example was run for 24 hours at the Hockenheimring race track where it set 22 international records for three-wheel vehicles. There were more than 60,000 examples built through 1964. Messerschmitt had returned to the aircraft business in 1956 and lost interest in the kabinenrollers, so later assembly was carried out by Fend's own company, Fahrzeug- und Maschinenbau GmbH.
This example wears an older restoration. It is painted a teal shade of blue with yellow vinyl interior and rides on whitewall tires. There are a few cracks in the canopy and some of the moldings are lifting off the body, though it is believed some of the trim may be original.
In 2010, this Messerschmitt KR200 was offered for sale at RM Auctions 'Automobiles of Amelia Island' sale in Amelia Island, Florida. The car was estimated to sell for $20,000-$30,000 and offered without reserve. As bidding came to a close, the car has been sold for the sum of $30,800, inclusive of buyer's premium.