Project Description

MZ Simpson Schwalbe KR50

Markie Says: “A push bike with a little engine and some tin ware”

MZ Schwalbe Simpson KR50

It doesn’t matter where you go in Germany visiting a town or city and you see these little Scooters. They were made by MZ in Eastern Germany. Me and my mates in the mid 90’s – Rob Miller and Pete Merchant drove passed the run down MZ factory heading to the Czech republic to race in the Scooter European championships at the Bruno circuit.

A mate of mine at collage had the motorbike version known as the Simpson 50, he got it from A1 Scooters after they stopped selling Lambrettas. Now his Simpson was not a match against my standard Lambretta Li150 – Oh wait it was. But once it was tuned – no chance and he was the butt of jokes in class.

I tuned a MZ 250 ETZ in the 90’s and god what a lump that was, MZ bikes were built well they were solid, well the engines were. This Scooter is what you can say is a bit tinny and the switches a bit tacky and everything else – well! They are light as a feather and the kids use them in Germany just for cheap travel. I always stopped walking between bars exploring a town and I always took a photo when I saw one. They grow on you they are so practical and weren’t restricted the same as other 50cc bikes in the UK.

I found this one in Poland, it had been restored as a university project by a young lady, who had made a trailer – made from another Schwalbe. When it was delivered by a daily Polish delivery company on a Sunday I turned the switch and it started first kick – good enough for me and it’s never been started since!

Schwalbe is German for Swallow as in the bird and also means dive like the footballers who pretend to be pushed down. Schwalbe is also a German tyre company for pushbikes, mopeds and Scooters, but there is no link between the two.

Now these are not going to be everyones cup of tea. They’ve got good lines and practical weather protection. This was cheap enough to get and put in the shop on display. Now when you do a bit of searching you can buy parts to convert the little single cylinder 50cc 3 speed to a 100cc 16bhp race monster with 5 speed gearbox.

A German friend who owns one went touring Scotland with friends, others have bought them in Europe, flown out and driven to the Elephant run in the middle of winter!

I liked this so much and saw some fun potential I went and bought another one! Foolish me!