The LA Times finally said today what we’ve all been thinking: The Buddy is kicking the Vespa’s ass lately. Sure, Vespas are more glamorous, and have a 60-year history at the top of the scooter industry, but Vespa abandoned their ideals of economy and utility long ago, and Genuine has totally stolen their thunder by knowing the American market. Genuine found a cheap-but-reliable alternative (the PGO Bu Bu), priced it right, totally nailed the rebranding and marketing, and (most importantly) built a quality network of dealers and riders that instantly fell in love with the product and spread the word with fairly minimal advertising required.
Sure, they were also in the right place at the right time, but unlike many of the current players in the U.S. scooter market, Genuine (well, Scooterworks) has been prospering for years by knowing the market and their customers, and they’ll surely be one of the few that remain successful after this boom ends. If half the “new Stella” rumors I’ve heard are true, they’re just getting started.