1957 Inter 175A Berline Microcar
Engine: Ydral rear-mounted 2-stroke
Horsepower: 8 hp
Transmission: 3-speed manual
A Little History
In the early 1950’s, the French aircraft builders S.N.C.A.N. (Societe Nationale de Construction AeroNautique), began work on an unorthodox “auto-scooter” using aeronautical design principles. Introduced as the Inter at the Paris Show in the fall of 1953 by the distributors A. E. M. W. (Ateliers Electro-Mechaniques de la Seine of Saint-Ouen), it was a kindred spirit to the Messerschmitt KR-175. Both shared a tilting canopy as means of ingress and egress. And, while they both shared styling resembling an aircraft fuselage, the Inter was decidedly French.
The diminutive vehicle was first shown at the 1953 Paris Auto Salon. Three styles were displayed, including a convertible. It was the Berline model with its unique domed roof and skylight that ultimately made production. A total of 300 are estimated to have been produced from 1953-1956 with less than 10 percent believed to exist today.
Among its aircraft elements is a helicopter-type starter – the Westinghouse Gyrostarter – which engages the engine with a characteristic electrical whine by pressing a lever. A steering handlebar and tapered tail mimic its aircraft origins. Two passengers sit in tandem, and a single central headlamp provides nighttime illumination.
Although the design remained similar during production, it is said that no two Inters are identical.