The name DKW comes from “Dampf-Kraft-Wagen” which translates to “steam-powered vehicle.” It carries this name because the first vehicle its Danish designer, J.S. Rasmussen, built, was a light steam car.
Inspired by watching events such as the Port Townsend (WA) Kinetic Sculpture Race, it occurred to local tinkerer and inventor John Montgomery how simple it would be to run a live axle through the middle of a canoe and use an inverted bicycle frame to drive it.
The Biscuter, or ‘Zapatilla’ (little shoe) as it was known in Spain, was actually built to the design of the French engineer Gabriel Voisin. ‘Biscooter’, the French name, was in itself a playful name for a car the size of two scooters.