Dan Kay of Old Towne Motocycle Shoppe has confirmed, as we reported Monday, that the U.S. version of the Piaggio MP3 three-wheeled scooter will feature Piaggio’s 250cc electronic-fuel-injected QUASAR engine, the same engine found in the Vespa GTS. Kay also confirmed that Piaggio was for some reason unable to use the name “MP3” in the U.S., and no name has been chosen yet: “Europe wants alpha-numeric, Americans would prefer a name.” The renamed MP3 will arrive at U.S. Vespa dealers in March or April 2007. Kay’s impression:
Very interesting! The integrated trunk with seat pass-through is a nice touch. The front suspension with the electronic stabilizer is trick, [and] the extra front wheel feels a lot less squirrely on grooved pavement and metal grates. Most people won’t steer as agressively to notice that a GTS is a bit more maneuverable.
In other news from the meeting:
- Piaggio/Vespa MSRP price increases will take effect on November 1.
- PiaggioUSA will soon announce the 60th anniversary models. Only 250 individually-numbered GT60s will be sold in the U.S. The bikes feature grey paint to match the original Vespa MP6 prototype, with a fender light and a leather seat. Other goodies include a wallet, key fob, book, and custom satin cover. The owner’s initials will be engraved on a silver plate mounted to the scooter. The 60th-anniversary GTV and LXV models will be a darker “Aveo Grey” with brown leather seats and retro-style speedometers. MSRP for the LXV is $5199, so we figure the GT60 is one of those things where, if you have to ask, you can’t afford it.
- Kay tells us Piaggio has more new models on the horizon, but he isn’t sharing, as “to not take attention away from the three-wheeler.” Fair enough.
- Aprilia’s new big-wheeled Sportcity 250 features the same Quasar engine as the MP3 and the GTS. It’ll come to the U.S. halfway through 2007, in the “mid fours.” The Aprilia Mojito 150 will also return to the U.S, at a new lower price in the “mid-threes.”