Conferences > International New Scooter BBS > Topic #1967
so even though i've only driven a scooter a couple of times, my wife and i have decided to commit to getting a nice one. and so i'm seeking recommendations on what people would get if faced with the following main considerations:
- less than $7k, preferably less than $5k but not essential
- needs to be very reliable
- should have high resale value (in case we change our minds
- enough power for two people to ride on somewhat steep rolling hills at about 45mph
- as light and nimble as possible
- prefer "classic" styling, but that's not a deal breaker
the following article seems to rate the aprilia scarabeo and mojito quite highly, but i'm hoping to get a wider range of opinion: http://www.tngscooters.com/DesktopModules/Documents/ViewDocument.aspx?DocumentID=158
also, i'm familiar with the process of buying a new car from a dealer (in terms of not paying msrp -- unless the car is in really high demand, of course), but i don't know what to expect in terms of buying a new scooter from a dealer. are prices typically negotiated, is there a generally recognized approach (e.g., with cars people often negotiate for $X above dealer cost), etc. either some tips or a pointer to a web page with some info would be very helpful. thanks,
So, don't rule out a PAIR of nice scoots. You could get a pair of Boulevards for $7K, if you bargained well. Or, if you like a vintage look and a manual transmission, Benjamin's Stella suggestion might just do the trick. Or, start with one Stella, and when the wife gets the bug in four months.........
Is there a Vespa/Piaggio dealer within driving distance of you? I wouldn't think about buying a scooter to meet your criteria without giving the Vespa GT200 a close look. If you want to hear my thoughts about the GT's reliability, you can read them yourself here on the Vespa USA site. The GT is not the lightest most nimble scooter on the planet, but it meets all your other criteria in spades. If you look around on this board you will be hard pressed to find anybody who doesn't love their GT200.
As for price negotiation, this is the second year for the GT in the USA, so supply has caught up to demand, but the problem is that most folks don'thave multiple local dealers they can price shop.That sort of puts a damper on comparison shopping for that one scooter, however, don't dispair. Many dealers have a demo model which they are usually willing to offer at a reasonable discount.
Hope this helps. Full disclosure, I am a GT200 owner and I count myself among the legion of folks who love their GT. I am not otherwise connected to any dealer or to Vespa.
I love my GT200 it is the best 2 wheeled transportation, I have ever owned. This has included Harley's and BMW's. Really a great scooter that will do everything you want it to. Vespa usually does not discount. Mine was worth every penny I paid.
I too, am just a happy customer and not connected to any dealer or Piaggio.
I like my GT200 just fine. Does 60 MPH at 3/4 throttle and will clear 70 full open.
Has no problem going 60 two up and here in the Adirondacks only slows to 50 or so on the steepest roads.
Big cushy seat and Loads of storage.
Also the light is super bright at night.
She took off work today so we could spend the day together riding. We packed a lunch and took off through the back roads of Maryland touring local National Wildlife Parks. Tonight after dinner she said "I love my Vespa".
The only thing is I wish I had purchased a GT200 for myself because I would like to ride the highways and ride further.
also am a bit concerned about whether the gt's weight will be more challenging to basically a beginning scooterist (especially when going slowly in traffic).
am wondering if something like one of the following might be a better choice, given our plans, or whether folks still think the gt would be a better choice (part of me thinks i should buy more than i think i'll need to have the option to grow into it). and in any case would love to hear opinions about these also.
- aprilia scarabeo 150
- aprilia mojito 150
- malaguti f-18
- vespa et4
- kymco people 125 (or 250)
- derbi boulevard 150
- yamaha vino 125
ultimately, i'm sure this will be based on a visit to dealers and (maybe?) trying some of them out -- or at least handling them in the showroom. but it's still useful to hear people's thoughts. for example, i hadn't really looked closely at the gt200 before.
thanks again for all of the help,
I knew a guy who had one, but eventually traded it in on a Scarabeo 500. From what he told me it had a fairly high top speed for a 150cc. A 200cc with the same engine as the Vespa GT was out in Europe and other parts of the world, and is now being replaced by the Scarabeo 250 (which will has the same engine as the upcoming Vespa GTS 250 and Piaggio BV250). No word on when or it will be coming to the US. Aprilia was purchased by Piaggio, so eventually I expect to see the Rotax engine go bye bye.
>- aprilia mojito 150
Essentially a plastic bodied ET4. I think it looks better, but the drivetrain is identical. It's a good drivetrain, very reliable and pretty rugged.
>- malaguti f-18
Seem to be very rare. I've only heard of one person with one, but he loves it. They have a Kymco engine, but the liquid cooled 150cc isn't sold in any US Kymco model that I'm aware of.
>- vespa et4
Neat scooter, these can be very expensive new, unless your dealer has competition or sells a lot of them. I've seen them used for very reasonable prices. I know of one for sale in my area with 140 miles on it, plenty of accesories, and it's in pristine shape for $3100. At that price you could get a pair of them and maybe even have a couple hundred bucks left over for chains to lock them up.
>- kymco people 125 (or 250)
The People 150 is great, as is the 250, but they are totally different animals. The People 150 is a lot like a Piaggio LT150 (also a good scooter, but the new ones have more or less dried up). The 250 is powerful, smooth, and would be excellent for riding with a passenger. I really enjoyed the one I rode, and it would be a great scoot for commuting, pleasure riding. I don't think it would be ideal for long distance touring due to storage less capacity than some of the really big scooters, and not being as powerful as they are either.
>- derbi boulevard 150
Same engine as the ET4, but it's a bit heavier. Gregg in Seattle has one and loves it. I have yet to ride one, but other Derbis I've ridden have been fun.
>- yamaha vino 125
Not really very good for 2 people. It's a shame that Yamaha has nothing between this and the Majesty 400. I think that if they or Honda had a curvy, retro styled scooter that could hold 2 people, had a good bucket under the seat, and had a choice of 150cc and 250cc engines, it would sell pretty strongly, and it would have excellent resale value, probably even better than a modern Vespa.
Speaking of resale, I think you will have a hard time making a choice based on that. Most of the scooters out now haven't been out long enough in the US that the original owners are selling them off. Those that are selling them off are often having a tough time selling. I think that part of it is that people hope to recoup some of their purchase, and they subtract the depreciation from the out the door price, which will include prep, freight, title and any other fees a dealer charges. Most buyers looking for used assume that MSRP is the price paid. So a scooter with a few thousand miles on it does not seem like a great deal when it's only $500 less than the sticker of a new one. The other problem seems to be one of buyers and sellers connecting. I think that a lot of people buying used have trouble finding the scooter they want locally, and a lot of sellers have trouble finding buyers locally. This may change in 3-5 years, but it may not either. If you get a major brand of scooter, your resale will be a similar percentage no matter what you buy. Vespas will be somewhat higher, but it's unlikely to be a whole 20-30% higher. If you find that another scooter fits your needs better, and that you enjoy more, then you should get it, and worry about resale when the time comes. If a scooter does not do what you need, then you won't want to ride it and you will lose more money on it than you would having something you enjoy riding so much that you drive it into the ground.
From your criteria it sounds like a Vespa GT would be a great choice. You should get out and ride as many of the models you're interested in as you can. It's no good making your decision on something you haven't ridden.
- Bryce Ludwig
I like the 200cc because it has spare power for hills, headwinds, my wife on back and can still maintain the speed limit without being maxed out. We tried 125's and 150's but the 200 performed substantially better 2-up.
My wife and I took the MSF training course on ET4's. IMO they are only slightly easier to handle at low speed than the GT200. I have 3000 miles on my GT and find it very easy to handle. Great scooter. Wouldn't trade it for two ET4's.
And for that you're tossing out a figure of $7k for a scooter, when only a short while ago you were wondering what you could find for $1k?
PS Guy over in the Kymcoforum on Yahoo has a nice P150 for sale down in Gulfport MS for $2200. If I were closer I'd go get it.
I just bought a GT200 for my wife as her first scooter. Here's her/our feedback:
The GT200 is an extremely easy scooter to ride and to learn to ride on. It's well balanced, has smooth, controllable acceleration, and great braking with good feel (no grabbing or pulling). Steering is easy at any speed. Scooters with smaller wheelbases & smaller diameter wheels, like the ET4, can make tighter turns more easily, but I didn't feel the difference was significant at all.
The weight of the GT200 doesn't matter when going slowly - it's very easy to keep the thing balanced even when going slower than most people walk. The weight DOES matter, however, when getting the scooter on and off the center stand, and also when parking (moving the scooter around by hand). At 308 pounds dry weight (no oil or gas), it's frankly too heavy for many women to deal easily with when not actually riding. You better go see one and try getting it on and off the center stand yourself.
As for the scooters in that review, the Scarabeo 150 best meets your requirements if you can stand (or even like) the looks. The Mojito Custom's plasticy Harley-Wannabe handlebars soured me totally on that scooter, but I liked it's larger 12" front wheel. Aprilla used to make a Mojito with painted handlebars in a normal scooter configuration, but not anymore - too bad. As noted elsewhere here, Aprilla is a question mark, having just been bought out by the company that owns Vespa.
Another option is to wait for the Vespa LX in a few months which has an 11" front wheel, which should help higher speed stability over the ET4. The LX is 65-70 pounds lighter than the GT200, but it's got the same 150cc engine as the ET4, so it doesn't quite have the top end, acceleration, or hill climbing abilities of the GT (and might be slower than the ET4 due to heavier weight).
An even better idea is to buy and install the sidestand which just bolts right on to the GT. That's what most of us have done.
Shoot, at $7k you can buy onna these
Aprilia Scarabeo 500
Other than that, buy a Kymco B&W 250 for you, and a People 150 for her
i happened to be near a store that carried scooters today and popped in to take a look at some in person. the store only carried yamaha and honda scooters and the salesperson was quite UNhelpful and unknowledgeable. but i did see the vino 125 in person and was a bit surprised by how heavy its 240 pounds seemed. and the bigger honda bikes they had (reflex, ruckus) seemed downright huge to me. (by the way, the store has a "no test ride policy" which i understand is somewhat common but still seems strange to someone like me who's only had experience with buying cars).
will try to get over to a vespa dealer to check out the gt200.
thanks again for the comments,
Swing by Ducati of Seattle near the south end of Lake Union, about a block from Buca de Beppo. Their web site is <www.ducatiseattle.com>
The carry Malaguti, Derbi and Stella (all of which make great 150cc machines), give great service, and are reasonable folks. Bought both our scoots there and was very pleased with them.
On Whidbey Is