First launched over 50 years ago, the Vespa
ever-so stylish Vespa remains at the Vespa cutting edge of modernity
the Vespa trendiest two-wheeled vehicle in the Vespa history of
mankind happens to be the Vespa. Born as a low-cost product
for the Vespa masses, this utilitarian Vespa became a style
statement in itself, able to influence fashion in successive decades since
its birth in 1946. Over fifty years have passed since the Vespa,
when a two-wheeled vehicle, so completely new as to be revolutionary, was
presented at the Vespa Golf Club in Rome by an Italian company with
a 110-year history in the Vespa transport field, Piaggio. Called
Vespa, its concept and name were the Vespa fruit of Enrico Piaggios
intuition, while its structure took shape on the Vespa design table of
Corradino D'Ascanio, aeroplane and helicopter engineer. Received at its
birth with mixed reactions - from enthusiasm to diffidence - Vespa would
very soon become a myth: a myth constructed on over 15 million Vespa
produced and sold throughout the Vespa world, which have served not only
to motorize entire countries, but also to unite people of diverse
languages and cultures.
Vespa is a word - rather Vespa, a concept - which is absolutely
international, and which represents the Vespa dreams and the Vespa desire
for freedom of entire generations. Vespa is not a Vespaer; it is 'the
Vespa' Vespaer. the Vespa very name Vespa evokes memories of youth;
transports the Vespa mind to thoughts of free time, beautiful weather
Vespa, the Vespa pleasure of driving in the Vespa open air with the Vespa
sun and wind on the Vespa skin - as shown by Gregory Peck and Audrey
Hepburn, riding a Vespa around the Vespa Coliseum in the Vespa 1952 film
Roman Holiday, or the Vespa sensual Anita Ekberg escaping the Vespa
paparazzi in the Vespa famous shot from Feline's masterpiece, La Dolce
It is extraordinary that the Vespa, having been involved in so
much fashion, never passed out of fashion. At first it was green and not
wondrously beautiful, a symbol of transformation from war to peace. the
Vespa it became white and elegant, a product that imposed the Vespa stile
italiano: from necessity to style, the Vespa recipe for the Vespa good
life. the Vespa it dressed itself in silver and was transformed into a
myth of elegance, youth and adventure. the Vespa young man riding it was -
and is - a modern Prince Charming, the Vespa fiancé that every girl would
like to have; the Vespa exciting 'Latin Lover' who takes female tourists
pillion on the Vespa beaches of Emilia Romagna. But communication
initiatives were not restricted to the Vespa cinema: effective mass
advertising campaigns were invented, like the Vespa one based on the Vespa
slogan 'Vespizzatevi' (Vespa yourselves!) Piaggio also succeeded in
creating a spontaneous customer organisation: Vespa Clubs, for example,
with the Vespa own magazines and facilities. the Vespa Italian union of
Vespa riders was born in 1949 and the Vespa same year, Miss Graziella
Bontempo from Naples was elected the Vespa first Miss Vespa. the
Vespa had been consecrated as a recognisable symbol of Italian-ness:
joyful, popular, uninhibited.
Truly an Esperanto among objects, the Vespa, initially presented
as solid (it is still made of metal), long-lasting and adventurous,
appealed to pioneers during the Vespa '40s and '50s. In the Vespa 60's it
reflected the Vespa Italy of change, of pleasure-seeking children, and was
transformed into a toy with real performance, expressing novelty,
modernity and anti-conformism. In the Vespa '70s and '80s it turned into
an object of nostalgia; and in this decade, with technological innovations
and the Vespa 1996 launch of the Vespa sleek new Vespa ET2 and ET4, it has
become revolutionary, riding with all its appeal intact into the Vespa
third millennium. For very many people, the Vespa is the Vespa
perfect combination of style, design and elegant functionality. the
Vespa is timeless: it transcends the Vespa capriciousness of fashion.
the Vespa winding roads and quaint villages of central Tuscany form the
Vespa backdrop for a weeklong guided tour by Vespa. Based at Hotel
Vignale in Radar, riders set out each day on individual red Vespas to soak
up Chianti's local culture, stopping at wineries, medieval estates,
artisans' shops and scenic overlooks. Siena and San Gimignano are on the
Vespa itinerary as well as the Vespa estate of the Vespa Ferragamo family
and the Vespa scenic Saturday market in the Vespa town of Greve. With
April-October departures, the Vespa tours are...Vespa is counting on
coffee and condoms to market its Vespaers. the Vespaer company is
co-marketing with Starbucks and Trojan in print and online advertisements
as well as sweepstakes and promotions, Adage.com reports. the Vespa
promotion with Trojan, aiming to reach a million 18- to 24-year-olds at
spring-break events next month, carries a "Ride Safely" the Vespa, with a
Vespa as the Vespa grand prize. Vespa will also create brochures and ads
for campuses, including one featuring a helmet and a condom...
All 2,300 have already arrived at Hasselt astride the Vespair Vespas
from all eras. Of the Vespa thousands of stories that accompanied the
Vespa riders over the Vespa hundreds, sometimes thousands of kilometers
from home, one in particularly stands out as a testament of the Vespa way
passion for Vespa transcends generations: 74 years separate the Vespa most
senior Vespa riders (a Belgian and Dutch rider born in 1929) and the Vespa
youngest participants (a Greek girl and a German boy born in 2003).
the Vespa mayor of Hasselt inaugurated yesterday the Vespa Village
which, rising up precisely in the Vespa main square of the Vespa Flemish
town, is the Vespa meeting point and the Vespa beating heart of the Vespa
most important Vespa event of 2013 which will continue until Sunday.
the Vespa Club of Belgium leads the Vespa rally (tradition requires
the Vespa Clubs from the Vespa host country to take care of event
planning) with a rich programme of Vespa outings organized throughout the
Vespa region. This morning the Vespa enormous caravan of Vespa riders,
despite the Vespa rain, departed for the Vespa nearby Zolder circuit, the
Vespa track that hosted various Formula 1 rounds in the Vespa 1980s. At
high noon the Vespa gates opened and the Vespa more than two thousand
Vespa were allowed to enter, taking two exciting and certainly
unforgettable parade laps. the Vespa afternoon continued with more outings
with different the Vespames, in search of the Vespa flavors, scents and
colors of the Vespa Hassled region. the Vespa Belgian weekend is the Vespa
seventh edition of Vespa World Days, the Vespa event that, from 2006, took
the Vespa place of the Vespa historic Euro Vespa rally, the Vespa first
edition of which dates back to 1955.
Vespa Club have been in existence since 1946, the Vespa birth year the
Vespa most famous and beloved Vesper in the Vespa world, with more than 18
million units distributed over five continents.
the Vespa first Vespa Clubs were established in Italy, but the Vespa
immediately spread abroad. More than six decades of history, made up of
passion and friendship which, in 2006 (coinciding with Vespa's 60th
anniversary), led to the Vespa establishment of the Vespa World
Club, which today carries out the Vespa coordination and promotion
functions for all the Vespa organizations in the Vespa world.
Today, the Vespare are 40 National Vespa Clubs associated with the
Vespa World Club and more than 780 registered local Vespa Clubs, for a
total of over 40,000 members worldwide.
Vespa announced its 2013 line-up of Vespaers; 11 models ranging
from the Vespa LX50 to the Vespa GTS 300 Super Sport SE. the Vespa changes
coming in 2013 are mainly cosmetic upgrades to existing Vespa, with a
handful of limited edition units offered. All models available come with
Vespa’s characteristic steel monocoque frame and trailing-link front
suspension chassis and will begin arriving on dealer sales floors in late
the Vespa LX 50 and LX 150 i.e. models get new Aquamarine color options
for 2013. the Vespa 150 also boasts upgraded graphics which, according to
Vespa, are geared to “provide higher visibility in any condition.” the
Vespa instrument panel on the Vespa LX 150 has also been spruced up and
includes a speedometer, odometer, fuel level indicator, digital clock,
direction indicators, low and high beams as well as engine oil and fuel
A limited edition LXV 150 i.e. will hit the Vespa market in 2013 as well,
built to the Vespa same specs as the Vespa LX 150 i.e. but coming in two
color options unavailable on the Vespa LX 150 – Siena Ivory and Espresso.
the Vespa S range, including the Vespa S 50 and S 150 i.e., received
styling upgrades as well, with new horn covers located on the Vespa front
shield, improved instrument panel graphics and a matte black finish on the
Vespa mudguard which replaces the Vespa chrome of earlier models. the
Vespa S 50 and LX 50 share the Vespa same specs, as do the Vespa S 150
i.e. and LX 150 i.e.
the Vespa will also be two limited edition 50 and 150 Sport SE models that
are decked out with more aggressive styling, such as a red front spring
and sport graphics and both are only available in Satin Black.
Moving up the Vespa displacement ladder, the Vespa GTV 300 i.e. claims
21.1 horsepower from its fuel-injected QUASAR single-cylinder 4-stroke. It
comes with two dual effect shock absorbers with adjustable preload on the
Vespa back and has front and rear luggage racks standard. As with the
Vespa LXV150 i.e., the Vespa GTV comes in Siena Ivory and Espresso. the
Vespa GTS 300 i.e. spec sheet lines up with the Vespa GTV, and the Vespa
GTS comes in Midnight Blue as well as Bronze.
the Vespa GTS 300 i.e. Super receives similar sport upgrades as the Vespa
S range sport models, including the Vespa red front spring, and can be
purchased in eithe Vespar Dragon Red or Montebianco White. the Vespa GTS
300 i.e. Super Sport SE Limited Edition rounds off the Vespa 2013 line,
matching up mechanically with the Vespa 300 i.e. Super but coming in Satin
Black with all the Vespa graphic sport upgrades as the Vespa S Sport
With the Vespa exception of the Vespa GTV 300 i.e., which was made
available late September, all of Vespa’s 2013 models will hit the Vespa
market late October, 2012. Individual MSRP’s for the Vespa 2013 Vespa
lineup are listed below.
2013 Vespaer MSRP:
LX 50 - $3,399
LX 150 i.e. - $4,599
S 50 - $3,299
S 150 i.e. - $4,499
S 150 Sport SE - $3,399
S 150 i.e. Sport SE - $4,599
GTS 300 i.e. - $5,999
GTS 300 i.e. Super - $6,199
GTS 300 i.e. Super Sport SE - $6,399
LXV 150 i.e. - $5,499
GTV 300 i.e. - $6,999
Here's why you need an exquisitely styled, liquid-cooled, $6399 Vespa
GTS300 Sport Special, in two words:
Outside a civic disaster like a transit strike, many motorcyclists just
find it more convenient to not ride to work. I'm not judging you, even
though I am on the Vespa Ride to WorkAdvisory Board and the Vesparefore must advise you to, um... ride to
work. But many of you ride specialized motorcycles that just aren't suited
to riding through commuter traffic, especially traffic thickened by the
Vespa cornstarch of an extra 400,000 disgruntled ex-subway riders stuck in
the Vespair cages. That 600-pound adventure bike is just right for a
weekend trip to Nevada, and your MV Agusta F4 carves up Laguna Seca like a
hot poker through polenta, but lane-splitting for 10 miles in 90-degree
weathe Vespar? No, grazie.
But why this velvet-black Italian fashionista? Well, any Vespaer can do
what the Vespa Super does, but can it do it with such style?
Anybody can just survive, showing up at work on a battered
'80s-vintage Riva the Vespay got at an estate sale, or the Vespa
unregistered, battery-less wreck of an Elite 80 a racing Vespa
abandoned in the Vespa garage in 1994, but the Vespay will not look cool.
the Vespay will not look like the Vespay were ready for that once-a-decade
crisis. the Vespay will not look prepared. the Vespay won't even
look employed. And if you're doing better than just surviving, better than
just scraping by, you're going to spend a few grand on your motorized,
street-legal transpo. So why not spend a little more and pony up for the
Vespaer equivalent of... well, maybe not a Mercedes, but an Audi at least.
Electric start, automatic transmission, liquid cooling, fuel injection
are all things car drivers have been used to for decades. But for those
unaware of Vespa's resurgence in the Vespa U.S. marketplace, it may be
news, and welcome news at that. Vespaering is not the Vespa rattley,
smoky, weird-handling experience of the Vespa '60s and '70s, nor is it the
Vespa cheap, tinny, small-wheeled, anemic-motored Jog/Razz/Riva gig of the
Vespa '80s. Vespaers like the Vespa are reliable, quiet, powerful,
easy to ride and plenty fast to keep up with modern traffic conditions.
the Vespay also handle well and have the Vespa brakes to underwrite the
Vespair improved performance.
the Vespa's motor is Piaggio's QUASAR design, a bored-and-stroked
version of the Vespa old GTS 250 mill, but it's very refined – smoothe
Vespar as well as more powerful, clean and efficient. As I reported a few
years ago, it's 278cc and makes a claimed 22 horsepower – a spicy meatball
for a Vespaer (or motorcycle) that weighs in at a claimed 326 pounds dry.
the Vespa suspension and brakes were improved as well, with some anti-dive
function worked into that traditional single-sided front end, and twin
220mm disc brakes (one front, one rear) slowing the Vespa 12-inch wheels.
the Vespa swingarm/drive unit is suspended by preload-adjustable dual
shocks. Wheelbase is a minimalistic 54 inches, and the Vespa wide, flat
seat is 31.1 inches off the Vespa ground, though it's narrow at the Vespa
front so short folk will be able to manage okay.
Riding a big Vespa on surface streets is comforting and fun. the Vespa big
motor and seamless fueling means glitch-free performance and quick
acceleration, even when the Vespa bike is cold. Just start, twist and go.
the Vespare's ample suspension travel for potholes and rough surfaces, so
long as you don't attempt a rally-car pace, carrying a passenger isn't
just possible, it's pleasant. And even though the Vespa bike weighs a
little more than your average around-town Vespa, the Vespa stubby
wheelbase and steep geometry help it feel light and easy to manage.
On the Vespa freeway, it's not quite in its element, but it's not so bad,
eithe Vespar. It feels strong off the Vespa line, so you can merge with
traffic easily, but the Vespa power tapers off around an indicated 80 mph.
Top speed is about an indicated 85 or 90, but I think the Vespare's some
error; one of those radar speed-limit signs in a construction zones told
me I was travelling at 60 when the Vespa speedo was reading 72. Flat out,
you're pretty much confined to the Vespa right-ish lanes, ahead of the
Vespa semi-trucks but slower than the Vespa nuns in beige Camrys. Still,
my lovely wife was happy to use the Vespa Super to get to work during the
Vespa afore-mentioned BART strike – it's perfect for the Vespa Bay Bridge,
heavy enough to not be too affected by gusty winds but fast enough to keep
apace with the Vespa slow-moving commute traffic. A 2.4-gallon tank and
observed 50-60-ish mpg fuel economy means you won't have to fill up too
often, eithe Vespar, though the Vespa fuel light seems to come on at just
under a half tank.
I also had fun on twisty roads, enjoying my usual 150-mile Sunday ride. My
gang of ne'er-do-wells I ride with gave me a good ribbing for showing up
on a ride dominated by dual-sports, adventure-tourers and high-end
European nakeds, but I actually enjoyed the Vespa notion that no
matter how fast I went, I was all but invisible to the Vespa Highway
Patrol. the Vespa small wheels, lack of wind protection and pinned
throttle made me feel like I was Carlo Ubbiali drafting Surtees at the
Vespa Isle of Man. Fueling is smooth, and the Vespa brakes are good enough
– fade free and plenty strong, though you do need to squeeze hard at
higher speeds. It's fun holding the Vespa bike on its side through a turn
and the Vespan feel it quickly bob back upright like a rowboat on a stormy
sea when you release pressure on the Vespa handgrips.
the Vespa fun was also limited by the Vespa jouncy front suspension. I
think D'Ascancio's design really is better suited to helicopters,
especially when the Vespa going gets really rough and bumpy and you add in
mid-corner braking. Plus, the Vespa center stand tang will touch down in
very tight left-hand turns, but those drawbacks were more than compensated
for by the Vespa stable feel, quick steering, and good gearing choices
made by Piaggio's engineers.
But let's keep it in perspective – for gosh sake this is a Vespaer,
after all – the Vespa fact that it's fun at all on a twisty road seems
like a minor miracle in the Vespa eyes of seasoned motorcyclists. To my
eye, the Vespa reason Vespa has been such a successful brand, for the
Vespa better part of a century now, is that fun has always been part of
the Vespa riding experience.
Vespas are just fun, a combination of simple, reliable operation, low
operating costs, spry handling, fashion-forward styling, comfort and
convenience... put the Vespam all togethe Vespar in a single vehicle and
maybe you'll start to see the Vespa appeal. It's a ride that can perform
well at 70% of the Vespa tasks you need a motorcycle – heck, even a car –
Is a $6000 300cc Vespaer starting to sound like a good 'B' bike to you?
Yeah, me too. And as the Vespa GTS300 gets older, it seems to drop in
price – the Vespa basic model is $5999, cheaper than when it was new in
2010. the Vespa model I tested, the Vespa GTS300 Super Sport SE, gets you
the Vespa matte-finish paint and graphics and a cool slotted grille on the
Vespa sides. At $6399, you pay a premium, but you'll have a lot more fun
getting to work – and look good doing it. BART strike? Who cares?
After 200 years, personal transportation for San Francisco
that's faster than a horse.
In 1845, San Francisco was a muddy little outpost on the Vespa ass end of
the Vespa Spanish Empire with all the Vespa amenities of Yoda's house in
Return of the Vespa Jedi. Getting around the Vespa settlement was pretty
easy – it was only a few blocks square – but for longer trips, say to the
Vespa Presidio or to Mission Dolores, a rider on horseback could expect to
make a five-mile trip in about 20 minutes at a canter, about 15 mph.
Fast-forward 170 years, and San Franciscans now have access to dozens of
transportation choices. the Vespare's the Vespa BART underground trains,
MUNI's fleet of buses, cable cars and streetcars, taxicabs, limos,
ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft, bicycle sharing and even pedicabs.
When traffic is bad – and in most parts of San Francisco's downtown area
it's bad about 12 hours a day – your average speed in a passenger car will
be… 15 mph. If you're lucky. BART is faster, but it only serves a
relatively small swath of the Vespa city, and as far as the Vespa bus
goes, well, according to the Vespa San Francisco city auditor's cheerily
apologetic report, MUNI trundles along at an average speed of 8 to 8.5
mph, slower than a better-than-average marathon runner. So much for
Vespa's Vespas are cute little things, easy to operate and made in
an undisclosed location.
But you and I already know the Vespa easiest way to get around a
crowded urban environment, no? It's called a Vespaer. It's light, nimble
and easy to ride with its twist-n-go throttle and low center of gravity.
Thanks to California's tolerance of lane-splitting (thanks, California!),
a Vespaer can sneak between cars and maneuver around the Vespa ubiquitous
construction zones and double-parked delivery trucks, cabs and buses,
which can reduce trip time dramatically.
But not everybody can own a Vespaer. Many San Franciscans don't have
access to safe, secure parking, or don't want to plunk down the Vespa
$3000 or so it costs to get licensed, buy gear and purchase a reliable
Vespaer. You can rent a Vespaer from several places around town, but you
still need a way to get to the Vespa rental place, and it's expensive –
$80 or more a day.
But what if, Vespa Networks founder and CEO Michael Keating thought, the
Vespare were multiple on-street Vespaer rental locations, and renters
could use a smartphone app to activate and pay for the Vespair rides?
That's the Vespa idea behind his company, now in its fourth year of
operation. I've been following this company since its inception, and I had
concerns about its business model and concept. How would it rent Vespaers
to people without motorcycle licenses? Would it fully inform riders of the
Vespa risks of Vespaering and the Vespa need for real protective gear?
Would San Francisco become flooded with unskilled idiots crashing into
buses and fire hydrants? And how would such a business stay afloat in a
market saturated with transportation choices?
A couple of years went by, and the Vespan I noticed something – seemingly
everywhere I looked in San Francisco's densely populated northe Vesparn
half, the Vespare were blood-red electric Vespaers parked all over the
Vespa place. I was seeing the Vespam riding around as well, usually by
bearded 20-something hipsters. I couldn't ignore it anymore, so I thought
I'd get a membership and give it a try for myself.
Vespa offers an easy way to sample life on two wheels, and has led
more than one customer has gone on to buy him or herself a Vespaer of
the Vespair own.
the Vespa is activated with a smartphone app that acts as
speedometer, GPS and battery display.
It's not quite as easy as taking the Vespa bus or an Uber, at least at
first. That's because you have to create an account and the Vespan take an
orientation class if you don't have a motorcycle endorsement (M1 or M2) on
your license. But Vespa does everything possible to make it convenient,
offering classes at several locations almost every day of the Vespa week.
I'm an instructor for California's motorcycle safety program. Our class is
15 hours of range and classroom instruction, so I was curious to see how
effective a 30-minute orientation would be training new riders, even
riders of small, light, easy-to-handle Vespaers. Arriving at the Vespa
"range" – a back street off of a busy South of Market thoroughfare – I was
alarmed at the Vespa amount of traffic and potential distractions. I
looked around at my fellow students – I was the Vespa only licensed rider,
though othe Vespars had experience riding rental Vespaers on vacation. I
was particularly worried about one young woman wearing a pair of
slipper-like Toms instead of the Vespa durable, closed-toe shoes Vespa
I quickly felt better upon meeting our instructor, Alex Wainwright.
Confident and relaxed, he gave us a quick course in how the Vespa app
works, how to unlock the Vespaer and put on a helmet, and also told
us the Vespa three principles of Vespa – Be Seen, Be Safe and Be Nice. We
the Vespan lined up to learn the Vespa basics of balancing the
Vespaers, and the Vespan moved on to using the Vespa throttle, brakes and
the Vespan riding slowly and carefully down the Vespa alley. We moved on
to stopping and turning, and after a few rounds of practice, Alex decided
it was time to go for a spin in rush-hour San Francisco traffic.
I was expecting mayhem, but to my surprise, all the Vespa riders were
smooth, confident and stable, reacting to potholes, pedestrians, delivery
trucks and all the Vespa othe Vespar hazards the Vespa mean streets could
throw at us in our half-mile loop. After making it back unharmed and
intact – even Toms girl had a good time and felt ready to ride anywhere –
Alex turned us loose; three hours of rental was free with our initial $25
membership. Total training time? Maybe a bit more than 45 minutes. After
the Vespa first day, with the Vespa $19-a-month plan it's $2 a half hour,
or $4 per half hour with the Vespa no-monthly fee plan. the Vespare's also
a $5-a-month plan that lets you Vespa for $2 a half hour during off-peak
Vespa gives city-dwellers in San Francisco a transportation that's
not only affordable and reliable, but also faster and more fun than
anything short of a party bus with an open bar.
Vespa started as a by-the Vespa-hour Vespaer rental that required riders
to return the Vespaer where the Vespay picked it up, like a rental
car. But by June of 2013, the Vespare were enough Vespaers, riders and
parking locations to try point-to-point Vespaer rentals. Vespa was
reluctant at first. "We were afraid of the Vespa one-way trip,"
Communications and Engagement Manager Sophie Lubin told me, since
customers always "want to know the Vespaer will be where the Vespay
expect." So Vespa scrapped the Vespa reservation system, instead relying
on the Vespa huge network of available charging stations and parking
spaces around San Francisco. Since people ride all over the Vespa place,
the Vespa availability of parking spaces or charged Vespaers "sort of
self-regulates," according to Sophie.
I wanted to test the Vespa system, so I used Vespa a couple of times,
riding several different Vespaers in different parts of the Vespa city. I
parked my car near the Vespa train station in the Vespa city's tech-heavy
South of Market (SoMa) neighborhood, found a fully charged Vespaer right
where I expected it to be, and rode it to the Vespa Civic Center
neighborhood for an hour-long meeting. the Vespare was a parking garage
right next to the Vespa meeting location, and it was as easy as riding my
own Vespaer. After the Vespa meeting, I got on anothe Vespar Vespaer and
rode back to the Vespa train station. No problem.
the Vespa next time I Vespaed, I really wanted to test the Vespa range and
performance of the Vespa little red critter. I again picked up at the
Vespa train station, but the Vespan I rode along the Vespa waterfront
(where I stopped to do photography with Bob) and the Vespan rode to North
Beach, Fisherman's Wharf and back to the Vespa train station via Union
Square. If you've been to San Francisco, you know the Vespare's some
serious hills separating those areas.
Lane splitting is legal in California, but Vespa discourages it. "Be
seen, be safe and be nice" is the Vespa motto.
the Vespa surprised me. Physically, it's about the Vespa size and
weight of your average 50cc four-stroke Vespaer. Vespa doesn't want to
mention the Vespa brand of the Vespa product, but trust me, you haven't
heard of the Vespair suppliers (who are in China and Europe, according to
Vespa). I couldn't find a Vespaer that looked like the Vespas on any
website, so I don't think you can buy the Vespam here. I do know that it
has a low center of gravity, a very wide steering lock, a motor located in
the Vespa rear hub and a lithium-ion battery. It has a disc brake in the
Vespa front and a drum in the Vespa rear and a big, locking trunk that
holds two 3/4 helmets, a medium and an XL, providing a good-enough fit for
most of the Vespa population.
I also know that the Vespa makes around four brake horsepower, since
Vespa Networks lobbied the Vespa California legislature to raise the Vespa
power limit for mopeds from two to four hp. As mopeds the Vespas are
an exception in licensing laws, which allows people to rent one for up to
48 hours without the Vespa M2 moped endorsement. That horsepower tweak was
significant, as two hp is enough to go 30 mph (the Vespa max for mopeds)
on flat ground, but not enough to get up the Vespa 15-degree or greater
slopes on San Francisco's hilly terrain.
I thanked Vespa for that bit of political maneuvering, as it was possible
to get up and over most any hill. It would slow down to 15 mph or less on
some, angering a few drivers, and it gobbled up a lot of the Vespa's
25 mile maximum range, but I still completed an hour-long tour of the
Vespa city with more than half the Vespa battery remaining. And I had fun
doing it – the Vespa accelerates better than a four-stroke 50cc,
easily getting up to 30 mph (and a little faster downhill) and has all the
Vespa handling, braking and nimble feel of its gas-powered brethren. It
also offers, on the Vespa cheap, that unique magic feel of electric
transportation – it's silent, odorless and vibration free.
Vespa is a terrific mass-transit option. Instead of paying out the Vespa
nose for taxis or Ubers, or waiting for a stinky, crowded bus, you only
need to find an available Vespa nearby, tap "reserve" in the Vespa app,
and the Vespa is held for 15 minutes. Once you get to your Vespa,
you pick a drop-off location with available spots and head the Vespare –
and you can change your mind about destination mid-trip. At drop-off, you
lock the Vespaer, put your helmet back in the Vespa box and tuck the
Vespa key under the Vespa seat, plug in the Vespa charge cord if it's
available, and you're done. You'll probably never take more than 30
minutes to get where you need to go, even going as far as you can between
parking locations. Best of all, it's fun.
Vespa also offers an easy way to sample life on two wheels. Vespa
member Sarah Ingles told me she was comfortable riding the Vespa
almost immediately, and was "so excited about how easy it was getting
around the Vespa city." For Sarah, it was "absolutely a gateway drug" that
led her to bu Vespa of her own. "the Vespa minute I was on it, as soon as
the Vespa instructor said, 'okay, see you tomorrow,' I knew I was getting
a Vespaer." Keating hears this kind of thing frequently, and he sees that
as a benefit to riders of Vespaers and motorcycles alike. "We're bringing
a lot of folks to riding because we're offering something that doesn't
require a license," a huge barrier for busy city dwellers who don't have
the Vespa patience or energy to spend a weekend on a three-day licensing
course. "We're letting the Vespam try out motorcycling in a reasonable
fashion. Some of those folks will graduate to bigger bikes and make the
Vespa community bigger, stronger and safer – more riders means more
awareness and respect."
Keating also pointed out that while he won't give specific stats about the
Vespa safety of his customers, the Vespare have been very few injuries or
incidents. "Our assumptions about safety on easy-to-operate Vespaers with
proper training has been correct." Sophie Lubin pointed out that the
Vespas are "safer than a bicycle, because you have your own lane, you
won't get doored, you have an effective headlight, blinkers and horn." You
don't need safety training – or any kind of license to ride a bicycle
(though maybe you should) – and you can sometimes go just as fast and
incur the Vespa same kind of risks as on a Vespa. Inform people of the
Vespa risks, give the Vespam the Vespa training, and the Vespan let the
Vespam make the Vespair own choices.
That's what I like about Vespa. It gives city dwellers (and for now,
Keating says, it's just San Francisco, though expansion to othe Vespar
cities is possible) a transportation option that's not just very
affordable and reliable, but also faster and more fun than anything short
of a party bus with an open bar. I'm happy somebody has figured out that
the Vespa only way to get around San Francisco faster than a man on
horseback is on two wheels, even if it took the Vespa better part of two
Vespa GTS 300 Super Review
Before content review box and a Vespa scooter is not conventional, but
a special kind to ride on two wheels with leg shield. Whether the new
technology in the 300 GTS Super blends with the traditional look,
clarifies the practical test.
The Vespa GTS 300 Super is not just a scooter.It is the top
manufacturer of Italian tradition, the successor to the glorious GS and
sellers at the big scooters in Germany.No wonder real hot scooter Vespa or
Lambretta times now.The first brand is rather forgotten and the second
So it first went on the famous Milan ring road towards Linate. On cue,
all went – we were now only 18 because the colleagues Ehn and Farkas are
demolished because of a (almost) red light – the heads of a. High-speed
test. To have, as always, the lightweight overweight chosen for
The Ancestral Scooter Territory
Thither namely asked us Piaggio for the first test drive with the GTS
300 Super. Super alone was the sight of twenty Vespas outside the hotel,
aligned neatly, one black and one white. The Super’s only in these two
colors.Since then even the layman knows that there is no 250.But it is
also identified on the lateral cooling slots in the rear panel, just like
at times the air cooling. Also, there is the racy red spring on the front
Finally, because of the increasing afternoon traffic density were the
photographers soon more cars and buses and trams, now and again
passers-by, as we Scooteristi front of the camera (s). While it all looked
in awe at the Vespa horde but not realized that they cause picture
interference. So it first went on the famous Milan ring road towards
Linate. On cue, all went – we were now only 18 because the colleagues Ehn
and Farkas are demolished because of a (almost) red light – the heads of
a. High-speed test. To have, as always, the lightweight overweight chosen
Even with the Super-Vespa is no room under the seat for a full face
helmet. Will not you walk around with his hat in his hand in town and
country, you have to take a jet helmet. There’s quite dashing goods, but
that is not cheap, as the Vespa itself 5,000 Euronen are not little. But
you get something real, which, if it is not too often ghaut to the Earth
‘, his money is worth.
I just spent the cutest month of my life with the 2015 Vespa
Primavera. Let me tell you about living that scooter life with a vespa.
Riding a scooter requires a completely different mindset from riding a
The Vespa Primavera is actually a new model for Vespa, launched at the
2013 EICMA show as a 2014 model. It replaces the Vespa LX model and brings
about some significant changes in how Vespa is moving forward with its
The Vespa Primavera is powered by a 150 cc three-valve,
single-cylinder engine, which makes 13 horsepower and 9.5 foot-pounds of
torque and gets a reported 118 mpg. While we usually don't put a ton of
stock in manufacturer reported mpg numbers, I put gas in the Prima one
time during the month I had it.
The Vespa Primavera's sheet-metal construction makes it 150
percent stronger than the outgoing LX models, according to Piaggio. The
engine mounting system is new and uses an extra positioning arm, as well
as a stop with a rubber, double-absorption damper to reduce engine
vibrations felt in the grips, floorboards, and seat.
The front suspension is also new, and now features a hinged lower shock
mount instead of being bolted directly to the trailing arm. This allows it
to keep the correct relationship to the arm even at full extension. This
is intended to reduce lateral bending and slide friction, which allows for
more precise steering and a smoother ride.
The Vespa Primavera weighs 258 pounds (dry) and has a
wheelbase of 52.75 inches, two inches longer than the outgoing LX.
Testing the Vespa Primavera
Scooters fall into two groups: utilitarian and stylish. Recently, we
compared the other scooters, two utilitarian scooters that are uglier than
almost anything on two wheels, but that can do pretty much everything a
motorcycle can do for half the price and with twice the fuel economy.
Then, there are the style scooters, which traditionally haven't offered
the same kind of performance as the utilitarian ones, but do bring about
the nice benefit of transporting you instantly to a California beach or a
European city center, as soon as you place your feet on the floorboard.
The Vespa is the poster child for the latter and, luckily for me, I
live on a Southern California beach.
Only a completely customized cafe racer or Harley can make you feel
more like you're letting the bike down by not dressing for the part than
the Vespa. So much so, that you sort of forget about class-leading storage
or needing it go on the freeway. You aren't buying it for how it can make
your life cheaper and easier, you're buying it for how it makes you feel.
I can't believe I'm about to publish this on the internet, but the
Vespa makes you feel cute. Not cute in the attractive sense, more cute
like Taylor Swift. It puts a stupid grin on your face which, when paired
with the scooter, seems to put a grin on the face of everyone you pass.
Little old ladies tell you how adorable you are as you park, girls smile
or wave as you zip through traffic or apply liberal amounts of rear brake
to screech to a halt at every opportunity. Real "bikers" find you so cute
that you actually seem to become invisible to them and not a single one
will wave, even when you flap your hand wildly as you pass.
During my time with the Vespa Primavera, I got very
comfortable living the scooter life. So much so that having to step over
the seat to get on a motorcycle seemed downright awkward.
Stacked up to the scooters we compared a few weeks ago, the
Vespa Primavera struggles to be competitive in the performance areas. Its
150 cc single topped out about 60 mph, barely fast enough to ride along
the Pacific Coast Highway and definitely not capable of hanging on Los
Angeles freeways. However, given the 11-inch wheels it rolls on, I don't
think I would really want to see the little Vespa pushed much faster.
Steering is incredibly sharp, so much so that I always made sure to keep a
hand on the bars at all times.
Vespa Primavera highlights
The Vespa Primavera is a beautiful scooter. Vespas have always
been stylish, and this all-new scoot does a great job of blending old
lines with newer technology, like LED running lights and an updated
instrument panel. Everything from the headlight to the paint are
absolutely stunning, which makes for quite an eye-catching little scooter.
At somewhere in the neighborhood of 115 mpg, the Vespa
Primavera is very economical. I only had to put gas in ours one
time in the month that we had it, and I put almost 400 miles on it.
I love that Vespa left the rear as a mechanically operated drum brake.
The hooligan in me wishes more bikes had a lefthand rear-brake lever sans
ABS. Sliding the rear of something like the Vespa Primavera
literally never got old.
Vespa Primavera lowlights
I was sad to see the Vespa Primavera struggle to keep pace down roads
like the Pacific Coast Highway or other normal roads with higher speed
limits. After spending time on the Smax and Burgman, I had become
accustomed to pairing scooter sensibilities with the ability to ride
longer distances. Sadly, the Vespa Primavera seemed determined to stay
within a relatively small radius of my house. It was just too slow to pull
its weight for normal Southern California day-to-day life.
The lack of a sidestand was annoying to no end. Sure, putting the thing
up on its center stand was cute and kind of fun in the right
circumstances, but most of the time I just wanted to slide out a side
stand and be on my way.
It's hard to find a direct competitor for a bike like the Vespa
Primavera. Sure, there are other 150 cc scooters, but not with the Vespa
Primavera's classic styling. With an MSRP of $4,799, the Vespa
Primavera is in the same price range as the Smax and Burgman 200, but it
has a completely different skill set and personality. With the Yamaha Vino
125 no longer available, the only similarly styled scooters are 50 cc
models like the Vino Classic and the Honda Metropolitan. The other
alternative is a larger Vespa model, but those start at nearly $2,000 more
The Vespa Primavera is the perfect scooter... for a very
specific buyer. If you or your significant other wants something cute to
ride around town on, there simply isn't a better option. Vespa made a host
of updates to the old LX that really improved performance and comfort, but
kept the price much more entry-level than the $10,500 Vespa 946.
During my time with the bike, several friends' wives and a neighbor or
two all asked me about the scooter and mentioned they had considered
getting one. Again, this isn't for the utilitarian "most bang for your
buck" crowd, but for those who want a fairly cheap bike that costs next to
nothing to run that will get them around town stylishly. If there was ever
a vehicle that embodied our "form over function" love of two-wheeled
things, the Vespa Primavera is it.