Like Kymco?

Another likely winner from EICMA: The new Kymco Like 125 and 50. 12″ wheels, free matched topbox, spacious floorboards, front-and-rear discs, and it looks like a cross between a Vespa LX and a Yamaha C3. What’s not to “Like?” Some of Kymco’s recent Chinese-import bikes are a bit disappointing compared to the quality of their Taiwan-made product, hopefully the Like reminds us why we like Kymco. If you’re not counting, that was four “Like” puns. This bike is due out in mid-2009, no word on U.S. availability.


Italjet once again mocks reality by displaying the Dragster (with a new sticker!) at EICMA. The and websites remain frozen in time in 2005, their entire corporate reputation resting on the unlikely return of an overrated ten-plus-year-old scooter. Can you imagine a company so hopeless that China won’t even touch it?

Baotian’s Vespa knockoff

Chinese manufacturer Baotian unveiled a new scooter pretty clearly influenced by modern Vespa design.

  • That’s plastic bodywork with a tube frame under it all.
  • “Lambretta” (the “Italian” one), Jin Jian, ZNen, FlyScooter, Lance, Milan, and countless others will all be selling this scooter soon.
  • Piaggio, unable to stop China from copying their bikes, will instead launch individual legal campaigns against dozens of importers in dozens of countries, costing the company millions, a cost they will pass on to consumers by marking up color-matched half-helmets another $100 each.

Is “Piaggio GT850” the Gilera GP850?

Remember the rumors that Piaggio would display a new 850cc scooter at EICMA? Remember we asked why Piaggio and Aprilia called the V-Twin 839.3 engine an “850” while Gilera called it an “800?” Well, this appears to be the scooter in question, and it’s not Piaggio-branded after all, instead, it’s a nicely revamped Gilera GP800, and they upgraded the displacement to 850cc without changing the engine one bit. At least they’re consistent now.

Vespa at EICMA: a video tour

A video tour of Vespa’s booth at EICMA.

Here’s another general video with peeks of a few scooters and an overall idea of the number of skeezy European models at the event, which pretty much explains why Bradford paid $7000 (and that was just the fuel surcharges) to fly to Milan:

Bradford checks in from EICMA

Got home last night to find an answering machine message from VCOA president, Corazzo proprietor, and part-time 2strokebuzz correspondent Bradford Duval, who was very possibly drunk. He didn’t clear up any mysteries about his GTS sidecar photo, but he did paint a colorful image that I’m still trying to erase from my head…

Hi Bryan, it’s Bradford. I’m calling from Italy. I hope you got the photo. Nothing particularly interesting at the Piaggio booth other than the GTS SIDECAAAAAAR which was FUCKING GOOORGeous… GORGeous! I would make that sidecar my matromonial BED if I got married again, and, uhhh, hope you’re doing well, lots of really great stories, and anyone who thinks that Piaggio/Vespa is all about the 2-stroke, you can tell them to FUCK OFF because I saw the prototype engine for the ’46 and IT WAS A 4-STROKE! And I got pictures. (unintelligible)…and VCOA is very strong and doing well over here…(unintelligble)…Eurovespa…(unintelligble)…Later, man, hope you’re doing well.

This is EICMA coverage you’re not going to find anywhere else. Gonzo! Stay tuned.

Nipponia unveiled

Scooter Station sure is excited about Nipponia. (Google translation) The designs are actually pretty novel and interesting (the “Renzo” especially). The Japanese company, now based in Greece, plans to produce these Italian-designed scooters in Greece using Chinese-made parts, and start selling them in Europe in late 2009. Type nerd trivia: Nipponia’s logo features the same godawful Revue typeface as PGO’s logo.

UPDATE: more from

Vespa GTV Pearl Sidecar?


Our first dispatch from Bradford in Milan is this photo. Bradford didn’t tell us what is is, so we’re going to make it up: This is the 2009 Vespa GTV in pearl iridescent color-move paint with a matching Vespa sidecar. It will be available in the U.S. in one hour, for $379.99. Or, more likely, it’s just a one-off done up for the show, which is more likely because there’s nothing about new colors in the Vespa GTV press release I’m reading right now, nor is there anything about sidecars. The bikes shown in the GTV/LXV press release are all classic Vespa green or 100 Sport beige. A Piaggio-designed matching Vespa sidecar would be big news, maybe Bradford will sober up and send a caption later, or a photo of the hot new Simoncelli Gilera Runner.

UPDATE: This site is calling it a “concept.” They say Piaggio produced sidecars until 1965, I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a Vespa-branded sidecar… Anyway, OmniMoto have some more cool EICMA photos here. (Thanks Eric!)

The “new Silverwing” is… a Silverwing

EICMA opens today, and the big story was how Honda was going to unveil a new scooter, a replacement for the Silverwing that would put the Yamaha T-Max to shame. The suspense is over, it’s a new 400cc Silverwing. It’s sportier and has some cool features, but I can’t deal with French right now because something more interesting just came up on the 2sb news desk… (and 2sb correspondent Bradford Duval is live in Milan, hopefully we’ll hear from him soon…)