January 22, 2012
Three Norwegians are taking part in an overland rally event called Budapest-Bamako on Vespa scooters. The rally is described as a poor-man’s Dakar and is not unlike the early days of the most famous desert rally, now run in South America for security reasons. The trio are just taking part in the African leg of the journey ending in Guinea Bissau (Yes, I just linked to the CIA World FactBook. Just want to remind people that there is information on the interwebs other than on Wikipedia!), but still no easy task as it appears to be the most challenging part. Their web site and their facebook page detail their progress and challenges. When you think making a trip across a few States in the US for Amerivespa is going to be too difficult, read up here an get motivated to put your big boy pants on and ride.
January 21, 2012
Scootermercato shared an Italian language article about a new Lambretta design. I like the color and the headlight has been moved to the front of the leg-shield. The angle of the headset and light position likely taunt those passionate Lambrettisti who adore the the first series of LI model scooters that followed the LD with enclosed bodywork. The photo looks great because the scale would be perfect if those would be 10″ wheels. But they are 12″ and if placed alongside other models it’s lack of proper proportion would be more apparent.
If you are interested in the Lambretta Saga, check out the Lambretta.com site. It is now mostly a posting of legal actions the supposed true copyright holders are taking against everyone involved in anything tangentially related. Tartarini the younger designed this new bike. They should have just done these bikes under a name of a different Lombardy river or maybe just the Italjet founder surname.
January 20, 2012
Not quite scooter-related, and maybe a little crazy, but ultimately, a worthy quest: Check out Jalopnik’s campaign to ban the confusing “Check Engine” light and replace it with useful onboard diagnostics.
Libertarians, complain away, but it doesn’t make sense to have a computer, a million sensors and a text display (if not a video display) in your car, then hide the results from the consumer.
If you’ve ever paid a mechanic $90 to tell you that your gas cap wasn’t screwed in tightly enough, sign the petition before February 16.
January 19, 2012
A Piaggio/Vespa dealer has told 2strokebuzz that a new 2Q 2012 dealer order form from PiaggioUSA has eliminated a large share of the Piaggio product line from the U.S. market, most notably the full range of MP3s.
According to our source, The Piaggio MP3 250, 400, and 500cc three-wheelers are no longer available to dealers, and the promised MP3 Yourban 300 will not replace them, let alone the endlessly-hyped hybrid that Jay Leno promised dealers in 2008. It appears Piaggio is totally abandoning the MP3 in the United States.
(UPDATE: Other evidence suggests the MP3 Yourban will be available in the U.S. later this year, probably with 350cc displacement. see comments.)
The BV lineup, previously available in 250, 300, and 500cc displacements, is now limited to the new 350 model in black or silver only.
The Vespa line is being desaturated in a more literal way, with a far smaller color palette. The Vespa GTS/Super 300i is no longer available in red, and the Vespa 150 LX S loses its red, orange, and two-tone versions, it will now be available only in Black or Titanium.
January 17, 2012
Who knew the Clubman exhaust was 30 years old? or who really cared? Well Mark Broadhust apparently does and has devoted a lot of time and energy into the exhaust. It’s no secret that Mark and his company MBDevelopments have come up with many quality performance parts for the Lambretta over the years but man, talk about information overload! Check out this dyno chart and picture filled facebook post of the history of the exhaust, how he has gone about improving them, and a sneak peak at a new version being made in collaboration with Scooter Center Koln.
January 16, 2012
I’m going to shut down our sister shop, Scootmoto for a while and start from scratch, probably integrating it into the 2strokebuzz main site. The shopping cart software was junk to begin with (expensive junk at that) and a couple years later, it’s almost unuseable.
I’ll leave it open for a couple days, so if you’ve been eyeing a 2strokebuzz “Beat Happening” t-shirt or any of our other wares made by scooterists, for scooterists, act fast. I’d offer a storewide discount, if the cart software would allow me to. Sorry. Free scootmoto decals with all orders, how ’bout that? (Yes, we always did that anyway.)
Stock levels are subject to inaccuracy, but I’ll let you know right away if we’re out of something.
January 16, 2012
I’ve been trying to get 2strokebuzz posting reliably to the 2sb Facebook page for months, is today the day it finally starts working? Let’s see.
While we’re talking site news, I apologize for the lack of posts lately. You may have noticed Brooke and now Matt have been posting occasionally, which is great, and hopefully they’ll keep them coming. Honestly, I haven’t ridden a scooter for months, though I have been working on my Vespa 150 and hope to have it running reliably for Amerivespa in Lake Geneva, WI in June, I’m really looking forward to that. I also recently (finally) finished designing a special issue of American Scooterist celebrating the life of one of America’s most outspoken devotees of the Vespa and scootering in general, John Gerber, who passed away in 2010. It’s on press now and will ship to VCOA members soon.
January 12, 2012
SIP Scooter Shop shared a video on their Facebook page today. It is a National Geographic program clip about the Piaggio factory in Pontedera. The video has a few shots of vintage machines in their museum. But one of the views that appealed to me was the factory building tucked in the Tuscan hills shown in the background of the test ride shots. I don’t know if the buildings are the same, but it was reminiscent of those old aerial photos of the factory from the 1950s. Other parts show the processes involved in the building of their larger engines (What are they doing tossing crankshaft halves into big vats of rocks?!) and the assembly of the MP3 hybrid scooter. Not a 2-stroke in sight. I wonder where they build those? I focus on the visual aspects of the video because it’s all in Italian, a language I do not understand. If anyone wants to translate any remarkable points of what looks to be a standard factory tour for the kind of shows that used to make the Discovery Channel great before they jumped the shark, feel free to post below.
January 4, 2012
Can’t believe none of us have woken up to this on a rally Sunday morning: Vespa covered in abusive graffiti by vengeful lover. Ouch!
Via Vespa Lexington (a month ago, sorry).