Two Three-Wheelers

1974 Meister K6

Offered by Dorotheum | Vosendorf, Austria | July 10, 2020

Photo – Dorotheum

Fahrzeugbau Ing. Hans Meister was a car company that operated in Austria between 1962 and 1979. They built a few models over the years, including the GN roadster, the K5, and this, the K6, which was offered between 1969 and 1974.

Power is from a Puch-sourced 49cc two-stroke single rated at 3.5 horsepower. Only 205 examples were built, and it features a fixed roof, two doors, and two seats. Meister only built about 700 cars in total, all of them with three wheels.

You can read more about this one here.

Update: Sold $3,680.


1970 Megu Mopetta

Offered by Dorotheum | Vosendorf, Austria | July 10, 2020

Photo – Dorotheum

Megu, whose official company name began “Megu Metall,” which is kind of awesome, was an Austrian company that started out producing cast metal goods. It was later acquired by Ragnar Mathey who had experience selling scooters, something he would apply to Megu’s future products.

From there, things get kind of cloudy. Production of vehicles is thought to have started in Vienna around 1966 and maybe wrapped up in 1974. The company hung around for decades though, not officially dissolving until 2005. I have no idea what they did for the last 30 years.

The Mopetta was one of a few models offered on Megu’s three-wheeled layout. Power is from a 49cc Puch single good for 3.5 horsepower. You sort of rode it like a moped, steering with handlebars, but it has a windshield, roof, a mirror, and a luggage rack! You can see more about this three-wheeler here and more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $2,365.

Mazda K360

1960 Mazda K360

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Elkhart, Indiana | October 23-24, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Mazda Motor Corporation was founded in 1920 as the Toyo Cork Kogyo Company. In 1931 they introduced the Mazda-Go, a motorcycle-based three-wheeled delivery truck. It had no top and a cargo box out back.

In 1959, that vehicle was replaced by the K360. Production lasted for 10 years, and about 280,000 of them were built in total. Once quite popular in Japan, they aren’t seen very often today, especially in the U.S.

This ex-Weiner Microcar Museum car is powered by a 356cc twin that made 11 horsepower. It sold for just over $25,000 in 2013 and is now selling at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Carter Electric Motorette

1904 Carter Electric Motorette

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | August 31, 2019

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

This is a pretty tiny vehicle. Although Worldwide Auctioneers doesn’t provide anything in the background of these photos to help with scale, I would imagine it’s about wide enough to seat a person and a half. In England, these were known as “invalid cars” – basically street-legal motorized wheelchairs.

But… it has a US license plate and is street legal here, too. It was built in England by a company I have no further information about. Its first owner purchased it there and later imported it into Vermont, where it was used regularly up through 1942. It’s been on long-time museum display and still shows fairly well, save for a flat front tire.

It has a convertible top, tiller steering, and 20-mile range when traveling at a top speed of 18-20 mph. Not bad for 115 years old. You will likely never see another, and this one will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,925.

D’Yrsan Cyclecar

1928 D’Yrsan Three-Wheeler

Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | March 23, 2019

Photo – Osenat

D’Yrsan was a manufacturer of small cyclecars that was founded in 1923 by Raymond Siran de Cavanac. The company built three and four-wheeled light cars and remained in business through 1930. They even entered a car in the 1929 24 Hours of Le Mans. It did not do well.

A 972cc Ruby inline-four is mounted up front and requires a hand-cranked start to get going. The car has chain drive powering the lone rear wheel. The bodywork is interesting, as the driver sits slightly forward of the passenger, and the rear of the car tapers to a nice point. Do not rear end this car, or you will be speared.

This example was sold new by the company’s British importer and was recently restored. Only 530 three-wheeled cars were built by D’Yrsan (and only 50 four-wheelers). This one actually looks really nice and should bring between $40,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $58,610.

La Libellule Tricar

1904 La Libellule V-Twin Tricar

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | November 3, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

Every year at this sale it seems like Bonhams manages to consign at least one car from a marque that has such an obscure history that no one really knows anything about it.

Enter La Libellule, or The Dragonfly. These early three-wheeled forecars were available from a number of manufacturers. It was essentially a motorcycle with two wheels at the front that support a wicker basket that you could plop an easily-influenced friend (or enemy) into. It’s like having a sidecar, but in front of you.

Not much is known about this company other than no records of it really exist prior to 1906, which is why this is listed as a “circa 1904” in the catalog. It’s had three owners since 1921 and has been in the same collection since about 1960. The restoration dates to the 1980s, when it first competed in the London-to-Brighton run. It should bring between $27,000-$33,000 today. Click here for more info and here for more from this amazing sale.

Update: Sold $42,211.

Moto Guzzi Ercole

1962 Moto Guzzi Ercole

Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | March 8, 2017

Photo – Brightwells

This is (at least) the third commercial vehicle produced by a motorcycle manufacturer that we’ve featured. In the vein of the famous Vespa Ape and Lambretti Lambro, the Moto Guzzi Ercole is a scooter-based pickup truck (though this one seems larger). The Ercole was first introduced in 1946 by Moto Guzzi, Europe’s oldest continuously operating motorcycle manufacturer.

The Ercole would be made through 1980 and this one is powered by a hefty 500cc single-cylinder engine. This three-wheeler is really just a motorcycle up front (the inside of the “passenger compartment” is literally just a motorcycle) with a steel cage wrapped around it. The rear pickup bed is a dumper, which is nice. It will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $3,403.

Velorex Oskar

1959 Velorex Oskar 54

Offered by RM Auctions | Madison, Georgia | February 15-16, 2013

Photo – RM Auctions

The three-wheeled Velorex Oskar was built in Czechoslovakia (in the city of Hradec Králové, modern-day Czech Republic). Production ran from 1954 through 1971, which is kind of a long time for a little cloth-covered car like this. The engine is a Jawa-sourced 249cc two-stroke single-cylinder making nine horsepower. Top speed is 52 mph. You can read more here.

Update: Sold $12,650.