“Casque décoré par 19 cristaux Swarovski”

October 10, 2008

I’ll give it props for being anti-Troy-Lee, but this has to be one of the ugliest helmets ever. Yes, those are rhinestones. Swarovski rhinestones. Come on, helmet people. Also, their logo looks like “CPA,” so this helmet will identify you as a tasteless certified public accountant.

Scooters predict the election

October 9, 2008

Here are two spreads from the PowerSports Business 2008 Market Data Book — a mere two pages apart — that speak volumes about the current American state of mind:

Sales are through the roof for the well-travelled, egalitarian, humble, urbane scooter. The hillbilly-slut’s showoff JetSki? Not doing so well. Draw your own conclusions.

The “Real World” atlas on motorcycle usage

October 1, 2008

A world map with nations scaled in size to reflect motorcycle/moped use. Neat. From the “The Atlas of the Real World: Mapping the Way We Live” by Daniel Dorling, Mark Newman and Anna Barford.

Zinesters Talking (Portland)

September 10, 2008

Karen Giezyng, who started the Oregon Scooter Club’s great ‘zine Kickstart has just released her new ‘zine Bumpstart. More about the new zine soon, but in the meantime, we wanted to give a heads up that she’ll be reading and telling stories from her recent trip to Italy at Zinesters Talking, next Tuesday (September 16, 2008) 6:30–7:45 p.m., in the U.S. Bank Room at Portland’s Central Library.

Chinese Nuclear Mopeds

September 4, 2008

NoZone magazine’s 100 Year Forecast is pretty right-on, funny, and well-designed.

Don’t mess with Texas plates

August 22, 2008

From Chad: Texas, with the lowest percentage of custom license plates in the U.S., has contracted a private company to offer a wide variety of cutomizable plates. And yes, they offer motorcycle plates. Some states seem to be making their standard plates ugly on purpose to sell more special plates, but Texas’ standard plates are actually more attractive than the somewhat generic plates offered by MyPlates (They’re not even embossed, which sadly seems to be a trend in plate design).

Australian Yamaha scooter TV ad

August 8, 2008

Via Steve, a nicely-done Australian Yamaha TV commercial showing the economical aspects of their scooters. Genuine and even PiaggioUSA are working on pretty limited budgets, but you have to wonder why Yamaha and Honda, who actually do run national spots on cable TV, haven’t done anything like this here in the U.S. yet. If it wasn’t for the Australian coins shown at the end (and if they added a few models to their lineup), they could even run this one.

Bajaj activates their CAPS LOCK key

April 29, 2008

The Bajaj empire consists of financial services, consumer electronics, and insurance companies along with their motorcycles, scooters, and industrial vehicles (and soon, their consumer automobile). It’s time for a new logo, though the story doesn’t bother showing us what it looks like. It sounds like the all-caps “BAJAJ” text (used under the “flying B” in the Bajaj Auto logo) will be used within logos for Bajaj Electricals, Bajaj Allianz Insurance, and Bajaj’s other holdings and financial services companies. Yes. I just linked to a Bajaj toaster. It’s not as silly as KTM’s toaster.

Another (positive) Honda-inspired rant

April 8, 2008

Bob sent this great Honda ad from 1967. The ad’s a perfect illustration of everything Honda got right back then, and explains how they came to dominate the U.S. motorcycle industry at that time. There are a lot of ideas here for aspiring foreign scooter and motorcycle importers (in no particular order):
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2008 “Art Vespa” winners

March 1, 2008

Three winning designs have been chosen from 252 entries in Piaggio South Africa’s annual “Art Vespa” contest. (See more entries here.)

“The Greatest Scooter Experience”

February 14, 2008

Chelmsford S.C. is not overly modest, the URL for the Camber Sands rally is They might be right, the rally sounds pretty awesome, but why, in the land of Neville Brody and Peter Saville, is web design trapped in 1998? Aren’t all British scooterists graphic designers like they are here? (Thanks for the link, ScootRS.)

Terror scooter kill color

February 5, 2008

A dude on a Vespa throws a Pantone swatch book into a wood chipper. Oddly specific, but I’ll take it.

Racing decals

January 31, 2008

A1 Racing Slicks decal A while back, we linked to Cartype’s awesome gallery of model racecar decals, full of great references for scooter paint jobs, but their gallery of racing and parts suppliers decals and logos is even more fantastic.

Chinese automobile logo rip-offs

January 31, 2008

Everyone keeps saying “sooner or later, China will get their act together and dominate the market,” which is probably true, and every U.S. importer wants to believe they’ve found the only good Chinese manufacturer, but here’s a clue about what we’re dealing with there for now.

Praise the Lord!

January 29, 2008

The new Stella print ad is pretty great. I like how Eric has continued P.J.’s sense of humor and general look and feel for the company, but is slowly subtly nudging it in a new visual direction.

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