2019 Vespa GTS 300 hpe
The Vespa division of the Piaggio Group continues to expand its footprint with a brand-new powerplant for the GTSscooterline with the GTS 300 hpe. Fans of the brand rejoiced at the news of the most powerful engine to make it onto a Vespone descendant, and for many, this is the engine they’ve been waiting for. Safety comes standard with a few traction-protection subsystems as part of the stock package, plus it features LED forward lighting to help you see and be seen. Best of all, it remains faithful to the design progression that began right after WWII and continues to this day, so it has that classic look that really seals the deal.
2018 - 2019 Vespa GTS Super 300 / GTS Super 300 Sport
Piaggio expanded its “Vespino” footprint in 2018 with the GTS Super 300 and Supersport variant. While it can be said of every Vespa that the design roots generally run deep, these two rides make references to some very specific models from history in order to establish its pedigree. Classic Italian looks are always nice, but under the hood the Super packs away 21st century tech to make it a thoroughly modern machine. Safety features were a front-burner issue for Vespa, so the factory blessed the family with a double layer of stability insurance to make the line suitable as an entry-level scooter capable of performing within the urban riding environment.
2018 Vespa GTS 300 / GTS 300 Touring
Vespa carries its GTS 300 scooter into 2019, along with the variant dubbed the “Touring” added in 2018. As usual, Vespa maintains the classic looks and features long associated with the brand, but added some decidedly modern gadgetry to the mix that brings the machine right up to date. Traction control and anti-lock brakes add safety and value to help move this family up to make a bid for top-shelf status within its displacement.
2018 - 2019 Yamaha XMAX
Yamaha brought the XMAX to the U.S. market last year after testing it in Europe for a bit. It’s a shame that it took this long ’cause the 300 cc class makes a lot of sense on our side of the Pacific Rim/Pond. A 27.6-horsepower mill promises enough speed to be safe, even comfortable, at highway velocities, and that’s ’muy importante’ in the American market. This performance comes bundled with a decidedly modern and mature look that just screams metro-commuter to me, and not necessarily for the younger set, either.
2015 - 2019 Honda Ruckus
Bare bones — naked bike, anyone? — and gnarly, the Ruckus looks like it’s right out of Mad Max. Even though it does have a 50 cc engine, no one is going to say, “Awww, isn’t that cute?” when you ride by on a Ruckus. Granted, you won’t be going very fast, so on-lookers will get a good, long look.
2018 - 2019 Suzuki Burgman 400
2019 Vespa Elettrica
As far as I’m concerned, the only thing better than new technology like all-electric drivetrains is when such fandanglery makes a classic presentation, and Vespa’s Elettrica hits both of those high notes. The timeless Italian design looks much like the rest of its current lineup, but under the skin, the battery and electric motor deliver the goods and push EV scooters into the realm of viability. Think I’m overstating things? Just read on and let me make my case.
2016 - 2019 Yamaha SMAX
Yamaha’s new-in-2016 SMAX scooter features a 155 cc engine, which knocks it off the usual tier-license tables, but brings us a minimal-displacement highway commuter option for the U.S. market. The unusual engine size puts the displacement just over the line making it legal to hit the interstate and second now in size to the XMAX in the Yamaha scooter stable for 2019.
2019 BMW C 400 GT
BMW Motorrad expands its C 400 range with a Gran Turismo version designed to bring some long-distance capabilities to the table. This mid-size scooter features comfort amenities alongside safety features that deliver peace of mind, and let’s face it, peace of mind has a comfort factor all its own. Cutting-edge electronics and multimedia connectivity come standard, and I gotta’ say the electronics suite is vastly superior to a good number of “proper” motorcycles on the market today. Think I’m overstating it? Hold that thought for just a few minutes and I’ll make a believer of you.
Continue reading for my review of the BMW C 400 GT.
2019 Geniune Scooters Rattler 50
The Genuine Scooter Company filled its Rattler range back out ahead of MY2019 by resurrecting its Rattler 50. The Rattler carries itself with a youthful exuberance that clearly targets the entry-level market, and this newest iteration boasts a handful of improvements over the previous generation. It rocks the same look and feel as its big brother, the Buck Ten (110), just with a smaller engine to keep the price low and power/displacement manageable for newest/lowest-tier license holders.
Continue reading for my review of the Genuine Scooters Rattler.
Vespa finally getting the Electtrica to production next month
Showcased at the 2017 EICMA show in Milan, the Vespa Elettrica is Piaggio’s first bite into the electric bandwagon. Although Piaggio took its own time to offer an electric vehicle, it is late by no means, and fresh information tells us that the Piaggio Group plans to begin the production of the Vespa Elettrica electric scooter from September.
The Electtrica is the electric version of Vespa’s Primavera scooter with a lithium-ion battery and a 4kW motor that is guaranteed to get you 62 miles on a single charge. The first vehicles can be booked only online starting from the beginning of October.
2017 - 2019 BMW C Evolution
The Bayerische Motoren Werke introduced its original C Evolution electric scooter to the great proving ground that is the European scooter market all the way back in 2012 and it’s finally in the U.S. market. A boosted battery ampacity gives it the increased range needed to handle a long-distance commute, but it’s the electronics suite that really puts the C Evolution in a class of its own. Traction control, torque control and ABS all make an appearance along with the 35-horsepower motor that, according to the factory, has no problem running right up to the 80 mph governor. I had to remind myself more than once that this is still considered just a scooter, though it could certainly embarrass many a low- to mid-range ride. Not just other scooters either, but proper motorcycles. Don’t believe it? Read on and I’ll make my case.
Continue reading to see my review of the BMW C Evolution.
Shanghai Customs have come up with this electric powered eCub 2 bike and kit
Serving 100 million happy customers, the Honda Cub is the first two-wheeler to cross such a mark. Now, the moped is being made at 16 plants spread across 15 countries around the world that serves customers in more than 160 countries. That is some mind-boggling numbers considering the popularity and logistics involved with the Super Cub.
Looking at the future, a Chinese custom house that goes by the name Shanghai Customs is offering their answer to the depleting dinosaur fuel and the increasing environment concerns - the eCub 2. It is a 1000 watt electric scooter that can make a swift 28-mile distance in one full charge. It also comes in a DIY kit to convert an existing Honda Cub to the eCub 2.
2014 - 2018 Suzuki Burgman 200
Mature, modern looks greet the eye as Suzuki rolls its business-tastic Burgman 200 over into MY2018. In spite of its diminutive powerplant, the Burgman 200 carries itself with a definite maxi-scoot appeal. Motorcycle-like suspension components and safety equipment boost its commuter capabilities with an increase in overall ride quality over your typical [scooter->mot-type vehicle, so yeah, this ain’t your typical 200. Let’s dig in, shall we, and see what else the littlest Burgman has going on under the hood.
Continue reading for my review of the Suzuki Burgman 200.
2016 - 2018 Suzuki Burgman 650 Executive
The Burgman line has always been about classy and comfortable commuting, and the factory seems to have found a sweet spot here with its largest displacement version that brings comfort, convenience and safety to the table. As a “maxi-scoot,” the Executive delivers a motorcycle-like riding experience with amped up scooter features that give it something of an exaggerated look, so clearly, this is a vehicle of extremes. Suzuki carries over its Burgman 650 Executive with a new color for MY2018, so let’s check this ride out and then see how it stacks up against one of the top office-scooters to come out of Europe.
Continue reading for my review of the Suzuki Burgman 650 Executive.
Piaggio to fit its scooters with free tracking devices
The UK has been facing a notorious crime of motorcycle thefts. Things in London, however, is in a different level altogether. There were over 14,000 motorcycle thefts reported in London the last year, and 23,430 crimes were committed using motorcycles that were stolen of course.
On an average, 77 bikes worth are stolen per day and to crack this atrocity, London Mayor Sadiq Khan spoke about manufacturers incorporating better anti-theft measures into their products to make it difficult for people just to whisk away bike without authorization. And joining Honda UK in this effort, Piaggio has offered to equip all the new Vespa GTS 300s’ and Piaggio Beverly 300/350s’ with tracking equipment free-of-charge.
2017 - 2018 KYMCO Like 150i
The Kwang Yang Motor Company (KYMCO) takes on some pretty heavy hitters in the low-displacement scooter market with its Like 150i. It carries itself with an overall modern look that borrows from classic influences with tasteful results. Power comes from a thumper that rocks electronic fuel injection to help the Like meet U.S. emission standards. At a glance, it looks like good basic transportation, but the devil is in the details, so let’s dig in and see how it stacks up against the mainstream.
Continue reading for my review of the KYMCO Like 150i.
2017 Lifan S-Ray
Lifan expands its small-displacement vehicle footprint with the S-Ray scooter that rocks sporty looks sure to appeal to a younger buyer base with a 150 cc engine delivering friendly, controllable power appropriate for entry-level riders and sufficient for urban travel. This is definitely one of the lesser-known brands in the U.S. market, so today I’d like to dig a little deeper into this little ride and see how it stacks up against a mainstream marque.
Continue reading for my review of the Lifan S-Ray.
BMW updates its 2019 model line-up
The race to the top is getting more fearsome every passing day, and the manufacturers are pulling out every little trick they have up their sleeves to make their product stand out from the rest.
BMW Motorrad is at the forefront of imagination, innovation, and technology and proof of that is their list of the finest motorcycles that set benchmarks for every other maker to chase it. Keeping the race alive, the German manufacturer has released a host of updates to its 2019 lineup, including its scooters, six-cylinder tourers, R NineT retro models, and the new adventure machines.