As promised earlier, the radically re-designed Vespa will be brought to market. The latest news from EICMA, as reported by Motoblog.it, shows a promotional photo where the new Quarantasei is decked out in commercialized trim. The controls, center stand, mirrors and turn signals are all aspects missing from the prototype that now appear on this pre-launch offering.
So it’s real, it’s arriving within the next year, and the question remains: Is it as interesting to throw a leg over as it is to look at? And will YOU be buying?
Jeb, of Fido, passed along this teaser image from EICMA with Italian description. The photo depicts an LML star with an automatic engine. Last year we saw an even more compact PK with the same powerplant wedged inside. Now the Retro Vespa kits to convert a P-series into a VBB-appearing ride may have a new appeal. The holy grail of vintage modern is nearly at hand. It will certainly outdo the La Vita disaster, but will it still look a bit Tranny?
Scooter Station reports the Vespa “Quarantasei” concept scooter on display at EICMA last year will be brought to market in 2013. I’m not a huge fan of the design, it looks like the Vespa equivalent of the Harley V-Rod. If/when it comes to America in mid-2015 (that’s 2013 in VespaUSA years), it’ll be homologized beyond recognition and priced out of reach.
Jeb (of FIDO fame) spotted an interesting badge on the electric car shown at 4:28 in this video collage of electric vehicle photos from EICMA…
Our first Britney Spears-inspired headline heralds the (maybe? sorta?) return of famed Lambretta maker Innocenti in a story that hasn’t garnered any media coverage, but once we blow it out of proportion here, it may send a few Austrian IP attorneys into a tizzy.
Jeb (of FIDO fame) spotted an interesting badge on the electric car shown at 4:28 in this video collage of electric vehicle photos from EICMA:
Continue reading “Not So Innocenti…”
Italian police confiscated Kaitong’s knockoff of the Piaggio MP3 at the EICMA show in Milan.
If that’s a thing… that… can be done, it’s surprising it doesn’t happen more at motorcycle trade shows. Surely it wasn’t a good idea to show up on Italian soil during the financial crisis on the week the Prime Minister resigns (incidentally, Berlusconi was slated to speak at EICMA but cancelled), and display a knockoff of one of Italy’s proudest exports. But one would hope authorities would afford the same attention to other imitators, too.
In other MP3-ish news, Vectrix is promising their 3-wheeler for 2012.
This is just a short post to beat Bryan and the new cub report, Matt, to the punch.
It appears that rumors are true (but are secrets really lies?). LML has shoehorned an automatic into a PK body. They are showing it off at the big bike show EICMA, in Italy. I noticed the photo posted in Scooter Mercato‘s facebook feed. Thanks, Dave.
Discuss. (Likely more analysis to follow.)
SIP Scooter Shop reports that they have a reliable source confirming that Vespa will be showing off their new 4-stroke powered PX series scooter at the upcoming EICMA show in Milan this Fall. The Genuine Scooter Company LML-made Stella 4-Stroke has recently made it to dealers around the country. But will the new PX come back to America? Would current Vespa dealers want it? One thing that many will be interested in is the design of the engine. Will it be unlike the LML and fit into the classic Vespa frame?
File it all under RUMOR until we see it rolling around Rome.
As posted earlier, LML Italia has promoted the arrival of an electric scooter. The German scooter shop SIP has delivered the goods with four snapshots of the literally green Star Electric. The scooter is an electric conversion of the popular LML Star (aka Genuine Stella). Electric conversions of largeframe Vespa scooters has been available as custom work from Soundspeed Scooters in Seattle. I’m betting a Stella Electric may come in at a similar price as the conversion plus an old project someone has never finished. We’ll wait and see. How much would you pay for an electric Stella?
Can Vespa shut down LML in Europe with their new PX retread? We’re betting it won’t be easy. The LML was on the market first, and even their top-of-the-line 4-stroke model is quite a bit cheaper than the Vespa model it apes (no pun intended). On top of that, Italy and PGO are offering subsidies of up to 22% for the 4-stroke LML Star Sure, there is a crowd that would never settle for an LML over a Vespa, but we bet plenty of thrifty Europeans will choose the cheaper LML, especially where subsidies apply. And Vespa’s threat is further mooted with new LML models expected to be announced at EICMA this week. Rumors include automatic transmission, electronic fuel injection, an electric version, and 50cc, 200cc, and even 250cc variants. We don’t expect to see all of those (especially the 250) but you can bet on a few of those, and a “Create your Star” program becoming available soon, at least in Europe.
In the disintegrating U.S. market where the LML Star is sold as the Genuine Stella, Vespa is unlikely to import the PX. The PX models sold a few years ago were priced at about $5000 and were unavailable in California. That price would likely be higher today, and California’s CARB emissions standards are spreading to 16 states, including scooter-friendly Washington, Oregon, New York, and Florida.
Ironically, the Vespa’s dated-but-beloved 2-stroke engine might be it’s biggest selling point, as LML is allegedly phasing out their 2-stroke version. But it’s still a mystery why Vespa, who were forced out of the US market in 1985 by emissions laws, haven’t bothered to develop a 4-stroke engine for the classic Vespa frame in the ensuing 25 years. Vespa and Piaggio continue to innovate in other product lines, so perhaps it’s a smart decision (and minimal investment) to keep the Vespa PX frozen in time, but LML is likely to cut deeply into the PX’s relatively small pool of customers with the same classic body, competitive pricing, and more modern engineering.
As predicted a couple months ago, Vespa has taken note of LML’s success in the metal-bodied manual-transmission market. Scooter Station, Scooter-Infos, Hell for Leather, and Motoblog.it are reporting that Piaggio is dusting off the Vespa PX 125 and 150, which will be available in the first quarter of 2011 with some minor cosmetic changes and a catalyzed 2-stroke engine that (somehow) meets Euro3 specs.
Continue reading “2011 Vespa PX 125, 150 for Europe”
The Indian government is looking to sell their majority share of Scooters India Limited, who manufactured Lambrettas until 1998, and currently manufacture the Vikram three-wheeler. Mahindra and Mahindra and Tata Motors have both expressed interest and at least one story suggests that on top of a promised $30 million relaunch of Vespa production in India, Piaggio (gasp!) is also interested in SIL.
SIL’s greatest asset may be their “world right (to) the trade name Lambretta/Lambro,” but according to the in.com story linked above, SIL’s ownership of the name is currently in dispute with the Swiss/Italian Lambretta Consortium, who appears better-equipped to win the fight.
Continue reading “SIL to be Sold,
Lambretta Future Unclear as Ever”
Just for fun, how many “new” “Lambrettas” are there now?
Continue reading “The New Lambretta(s)”
Make of this what you will…
More to say about this later, but check out the Lambretta Pato 125N. This is the same company that’s been selling the “Chrome Verizon logo”-style generic Chinese scooter in Italy as the “Lambretta Pato” for a few years, so it’s almost surely a typical Chinese engine/frame with a plastic bodywork, like the “Venti/La Vita” is to the Vespa.
Piaggio unveiled the new “USB” concept bike at EICMA this week. Just type “MP3″ or “USB” into Google and the first thing you get is Piaggio Scooters, right!? I look forward to the new Piaggio “BBW,” the Piaggio “The,” and the Piaggio “Britney Naked.” To be fair, the bike has some interesting points, but come ON, namers… Say What you will about the “Grand Dink” and the “Symply,” but they’re easy to find on the web.