“Hamara Bajaj” commercial

I was just Googlestalking someone (more about that link in a minute) and found the famous “Hamara Bajaj” commercial in her YouTube favorites. I’ve always heard how great this commercial is, but never seen it until now. Assuming the swastika at :28 holds a different meaning in Indian culture than it does in Western culture (I’m pretty sure it does), it is a very touching tribute. Now MAKE SOME, Bajaj! I stand by my assertion that Bajaj will unveil the perfect scooter exactly one month after the worldwide scooter boom comes to an end.

Australian Yamaha scooter TV ad

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.

Lambretta Pato commercial

A TV commercial for the European-market “Lambretta” Pato (aka the Lance Milan, ZNen ZN151T-F, Flyscooter LaVie, etc.), not to be confused with the Lambretta International Uno and Due sold in the U.S., or an actual Lambretta. The only thing sadder than a Chinese Lambretta is putting end credits on a commercial on YouTube. (Via motoblog.it.)

Piaggio USA names new PR firm

Looks like Piaggio USA won’t have Access Communications to kick around anymore. Hard to believe anyone could be worse than CooperKatz, who botched the “Vespa Blogs” idea, but you’ve also gotta wonder why the current glut of scooter stories are practically ignoring Piaggio products to talk about the 100mpg Buddy. Oh, wait we just answered our own question there. Anyway, if Brandware can increase the Vespa’s fuel efficiency*, lower the price, and improve the parts supply, and give dealers more realistic terms and margins… Good luck, Brandware.

*Place your bets on the exact date Vespa’s fuel efficiency rating is ‘recalculated’ to be more competitive with other scooters. (Alternately, guess how long it takes before the hybrid MP3 becomes the centerpiece of their campaign, despite the fact that $10/gallon gas wouldn’t drive an American to buy an $8000 hybrid three-wheeled scooter.)

Vespa’s punchy “new” scooter

If this article is to be believed, the Vespa LX150 was just released in Canadia. Maybe they meant to review the Vespa LXS, which just came oot, and is being promoted in Canada under the banner “Born to be Square”, with what looks like 4/5th of the Kids in the Hall, circa 1992, with LXS headsets for heads.

Many people hate the square headlight on the “S.” Those people are dumb, it is awesome, and VofC is smart to turn it into a selling point. If you want a round headlight, buy the “new” LX 150!

Another (positive) Honda-inspired rant

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):
Continue reading “Another (positive) Honda-inspired rant”

Vespanomics Go Green videos

What VespaUSA is calling “your chance to show and tell the world what Vespanomics is through your creative lens” is what the advertising industry calls “spec work,” doing work for free in the hopes of accceptance or a prize. I’m not knocking the entrants, and there are some pretty decent entries, but contests like these always come off as the last gasp of a company with no ideas, and the inequal footing of entrants (some amateur, and some professional enough to know better) and the corporate overview that’s necessary usually strips out most of the fun. With video editing capabilities in the hands of more and more consumers, and the “rise” of “viral” video, it’s not surprising to see contests like this popping up all over, and they are. PiaggioUSA surely borrowed the idea from recent well-publicized Heinz or Doritos contests. While it’s tempting to think they’re doing it to save a few bucks (Heinz’ $57,000 prize was far less than the creative cost of a “real” national advertising campaign), it’s funny to think they also had to spend lots of money and time advertising the contest, which makes it seem even sillier. To be fair, Vespa’s contest isn’t really a “make us a commercial” deal, I think they’re just looking for some viral love (and more mailing list names to whom they’ll never send anything), and the prize (a $5000 scooter) reflects that, though also makes it that much less enticing. Again, the entries themselves are pretty decent and worth checking out, it’s the contest itself that pushes all my wrong buttons. Judging by the fact that no “end date” is posted anywhere, I’m guessing this will be yet another promotional media-bandwagon-jump that will succeed despite PiaggioUSA’s instant abandonment of the project, thanks to the devotion of scooterists and the scooter community. (See also: Vespa Blogs),

Moped Takeover

Hollywood Holt's

OK, I’ve been waiting for this day for years. between Hollywood Holt’s “Throw a Kit” video (featuring Chicago’s Peddy Ca$h club) and Andy Samberg’s Hot Rod movie, mopeds have officially taken over the hipster market and are finally positioned to become ubiquitous in television commercials and otherwise overexposed and boring, allowing scooters to fade back into obscurity so I can buy them for $800 again. Take note, hipsters, there soon will be folks showing up at moped rallies wearing fanny packs. And not Pac-Man fanny packs from Ragstock, either, I mean actual unironic fanny packs.

That said, “Throw a Kit” is awesome, and the first rap song to ever rhyme “Garelli” with “Minarelli”