A torpedo is a maillot with no sides or waistband. It's most typical manifestation a very deep V-front that may be bare naveled, with narrow sides, a tangaed behind, and straps that might wide enough to cover the breast (KA93F5-G5), or nothing more than strings. It basic modus is brevity, and it excels at displaying cleavage, buttage, and the inguinal. A torpedo is essentially a loop of fabric that passés through the crotch, up the back where it parts for the neck, crosses the shoulders, and down the front again over the breasts.
In its fuller incarnations the straps of the torpedo can cover the breasts (CB9372, CB9373, CB9377), although this can be a very unstable coverage, and one which almost always involves cleavage centros and côté, if not full breast exposures (CSA2D0BS). In its more minuscule version the straps are only strings, and bikiniite is most definitely topless (WK9546BS) unless she wears a complementary top (ZLA832BS).
The Torpedo Clarified
Like the slingshot, the torpedo is an early 1990s creation. Both involve a very high legline, narrow vertical coverage of the breast, exposed inguinals, and are frequently tangaed. One difference is that the slingshot incorporates a (disguises) waistband and is typically haltered, whereas the torpedo must involve straps.
In topological terms, a torpedo has three edges: Two leglines and one neckline. This is contrasted with the four edges of the slingshot and the five edges of the pretzel. But it is markedly similar to the I-front.
The torpedo is also related to the suspender maillot, but again the definitive distinction lies in the number of edges: the suspender maillot has five. Both maillots have shoulder straps and may be topless; the difference is that the suspender has a connected waist; the torpedo does not.
It may be argued that the torpedo is not a maillot at all but a form of strapped culotte--sort of a sideless with straps or a strapped g-string. Even more so than the strapped maillot, the straps are an essential part of the torpedo--even if it is worn with a top. The fine points of this discussion are presented in the suspender maillot section and are not repeated here.
Both the suspender and torpedo can be worn with the straps twisted into different configurations. These rich variations are most simply illustrated with the string torpedo:
The straps may be worn normally or over the alternate shoulder. They may be twisted and worn over the corresponding (KA93C0) or opposite shoulder. Twisting them twice produces many variations. Here one side is twisted twice but the other is worn as a waistband (SR9411).
The bikini scientist would report more of these but is too busy doing research.