Phil and the PGO website (note “English” link in top right corner) helped me answer some questions about Genuine Scooter Co‘s two new scooters:
- These scooters are made by PGO in Taiwan? Is this the same PGO that used to make Vespas under license? Yes. PGO has been around since 1964 and worked with Piaggio from 1972-1982. It appears they made P-series clones well after that, as well, but apparently no longer make any Vespa-like scooters.
- Soâ€¦ Taiwan? Taiwan, unlike China, has a fairly good reputation for quality. Kymco and TGB are both well-regarded, legitimately-distributed manufacturers, and PGO scooters, despite strangely not being sold domestically in Taiwan, are equally well-regarded and sold worldwide, even racking up a few awards lately.
- What does PGO stand for? Phil: “The first question I asked at their booth was “What does P.G.O. stand for? I am an American after all and those letters must mean something. The response was ‘PGO makes the word “Piaggio” when you say it’. Ok, I’m not sure whether they did this as a direct result of their relationship with Piaggio, or they did it to capitalize on the success of Piaggio. It might be a chicken-and-egg sorta thing.” 2sb always suspected it was a play on Piaggio (they used to use the same font) but it would be interesting to find out the full story.
- So we know the Genuine Stella is a re-branded and modified LML Star. What are these new scooters? The Black Cat 50 is based on the (wait for itâ€¦) PGO PMS 50, and the Buddy 125 is called (it gets better) “My Bu Bu” by PGO. So in both cases, renaming was pretty much essential.
- What does this mean for Genuine’s relationship with LML and the Stella? Nothing, apparently, Stella sales are still going very strong and the PGO deal is a separate deal that will have no effect on the LML deal. (Changing emissions standards will probably eventually bring an end to Stella sales, so this is probably Genuine’s first step in planning for a post-2-stroke market.)
Note that we didn’t bother talking to Genuine, and these answers are partly educated speculation. We also don’t know what changes (other than graphics) Genuine will be making from Taiwanese spec. (In the Stella’s case, many improvements were made, both performance- and aesthetics-related.) Maybe Scooterworks/Genuine insiders Abe or PJ can let us know more.
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For those who are interested in the new automatic models, better photos and specs are posted now on the Genuine website, along with MSRPs for each:
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