Piaggio surprised the world today by announcing three new Vespa production models based on the 60th anniversary custom scooters they displayed at the Milan show. The “Vespa GT60” is based on the GTS, but remodeled to emulate the original “Vespa 98” model from 1946. The Vespa GTV and Vespa LXV are retro-styled versions of the GTS and LX: the GTV is modeled after 50s Vespas–a saddle seat, exposed handlebars and fenderlight–and the LXV modeled after the classic Vespas of the 60s. If they make it to America, it’s likely they’ll be in very limited quantities, so call your dealer now, inform them about these new models that they won’t even have heard about yet, and then have them start a waiting list with your name on top.
We’ll add some more details and post many more photos in the gallery later today. No we won’t. we’re not Piaggio’s monkey. Everyone and their mom has posted more photos and specs, Google it. It’s not like they’ll be available here anyway.
13 thoughts on “60th Anniversary Vespa models: Surprise announcement”
Looks nice, but I don’t think the US will approve the fenderlight. They will prolly have to bring it to US standards making it… useless. : (
I’m guessing they’re do the “send every US dealer one of each and that’s all they get” thing they did with the PX150 America, and they’ll be priced for the collector market. The fender may be legal… the top of a GTS front fender is probably as high as most car headlights. If the Madass and Xkelton are street legal, these things sure are.
Also, remember that the DOT doesn’t actually inspect bikes, they just issue the rules and it’s up to the manufacturer to comply, file the paperwork, and label their vehicles as “DOT approved.”
New and improved! With more Vino-ish action!
It’s that nice front fender light that I would would buy it for (and the fact that it is a rare, limited edition) so if they changed the light set upwhen/if impirted to Australia, I think I would give it a skip. If not hmmm maybe I have found a bike to buy!
Im not sure why the think putting a fender light on a bike that ugly is going to even remotely remind anyone of a late 40s / early 50s vespa. it looks like a half-assed nod at the old bikes. if they really wanted to commemorate, why not give it the curvy sexy lines of the original, with modern technology? hell, i can put a fender light on my P, its not going to make it look “older”
As i said about the “custom models” that we now know were protoypes of these scooters, there’s nothing that special about them, it’s more a ‘trim package” where they’ve added some more retro accessories to sell them to collectors. But they’ll sell ’em, never fear.
It’s still totally beyond me why Piagggio doesn’t offer a modernized GS-era clone at a GTS-range price. There’s no reason it can’t be done, CMSI, a company with a millionth of the resources of Piaggio, almost brought a totally respectable modern Lambretta to market, and if it doesn’t happen, it’s because of lack of money and legal problems, neither of which Piaggio would face in a similar project. They still make the PX150 engine, how hard would it be to design and press a GS-style frame with some modern features? At least half (I’d bet 75%) of the people who bought an ET, LX, PX, or GT (not to mention a Bajaj or LML/Stella or any other retro-styled scooter) in the past ten years would probably have preferred to own an vintage scooter, but were frightened off by the performance and reliability of an old scooter. An accurate-as-possible GS160-framed scooter from a company as legitimate as Piaggio would pay for its tooling and design costs in the first batch of orders.
It’s important to innovate and look to the future, but at the same time, if your company’s reputation is built on one fantastic machine, why ignore it? Fuck “retro,” bring on the real thing, but new.
piaggio’s market in europe, at least from what i have seen, doesnt really seem interested in the classic styles. they want racy. they want dragsters and runners. however, the vespa name wont be vespa if they sell bikes in those styles (thats why theres vespa and piaggio branded separate, i assume.) but in the quest for that little chuck of the “new style” crowd, the vespa name is selling its soul.
Vespa did make a modern automatic in a more standard body. It was the PK plurimatic/automatica range. They could build the engine. They could put it in a VBB/GS style chassis. But like the velo, it’s a hard fit and they wouldn’t be able to find underseat storage. I think that would kill any hopes of selling more than a handful to enthusiasts. Blame the SOBs of the general public who actually ride thier scooters for utilitarian purposes and want underseat storage. I bet even the designers don’t love the fact that they have to design an entire scooter around a place to store gloves, groceries or helmets.
I totally understand the demand for modern scooters, and Brooke, they still sell the PX150, I don’t think it’s a gearing issue, it’s an issue of reliabilty, DOT compliance, and new-vehicle accountabilty. But the P/PK design is not the pinnacle of Vespa design, the GS and other, say, early 60s bikes were. I suspect few people that shelled out $5000 for the PX150 (and probably a lot ofpeople who shelled out $3000-4000 for a Stella or Bajaj) would have even considered a P-series if there was a $5500 street-legal-but more-or-less-original looking GS scooter, which could even USE THE PX150 engine they already make.
The P-series was utter crap, stylistically, compared to the 60s/70s Vespas. It was released because Vespa felt they were out of date. It was wildly successful at the time, and it of course had greatly improved electrics and reliability, and who knows, maybe people did like its looks more at the time. But in retrospect, the similarity but inferiority of its design is maddening. Why was it made for nearly 30 years? a Rally 200 is mechanically the same machine (what would have been so hard about a 12-volt Rally 200 E?), but that style was totally abandoned in the very year the Mod revival was in full swing, and the older design has remained more celebrated and desired, but ignored by Piaggio, ever since.
I guess probably when the P came out there were already those (mods, collectors) clamoring for 50s-style Vespas, so maybe you can’t win. The ET-series is now forgotten after a ten-year run and someday someone will write a blog entry complaining that the 2018 Vespa H2GS Hydrogen scooter has totally abandoned the ET-series design that was the pinnacle of Vespa design, and how hard would it be for Piaggio to sell an ET4 with a hydrogen engine?
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