first off, pics, because that's all you jerks care about. 2013 piaggio bv350, SHINY BLACK. i was torn between it and silver, but i didn't want to be mistaken for a bmw
ass shot, don't mind the messy garage
with the ol' mana
anyway! impressions. i'm a n00b motorcyclist overall, and only put about 10K miles down on scoots (although i was a dirt rat in my YOOF), but, hey, i'm as qualified to remark as, well, maybe your average amazon reviewer. i traded in my aprilia sportcity 250 because i found i was riding it at 60+ an awful lot on the slab going in and out of seattle, and wanted a commuter/get-around scoot with a it more heft, comfort, and amenity. reviews of the bv350 indicated it would fit the bill.
no, i did not want a majesty/burgman/silverwing/c650. i have the WORLD'S BIGGEST SCOOTER already: the aprilia mana 850 gt! (also i am only 39.) 33ish hp in a 390 lb. frame seemed like a good middleweight compromise between urban slumbike and slab crawler, and after a test ride: SHO NUFF.
i've put about 300 miles on it, and have tried to be gentle breaking it in, but, uh, while it may not be the mana, it punches hard when i need it to. here's my plusses and minuses:
- really comfortable upright position with a decently cushy suspension.
- AMAZINGLY low center of gravity lets me treat a nearly 400 lb. scoot like a 300 lb. one. brakes may not be abs, but they glide me to perfect stops even on nasty busted-ass seattle hill streets and grip well in the rain. (so far. i will test this one further. ;-))
- AWESOME midband throttle experience. as noted earlier, it destroys cages at middle speeds, and makes passing smooth and secure-feeling.
- good amenties. lighter socket for my gerbing gloves, large large LARGE underseat space (i also added a 40L shad topcase).
- good fit/finish. gorgeous display. (awful display graphics have kept me away from great kymco scoots, which is lame, but there you go.) throttle grips are great, and both brake levers have perfect tension for me.
- engine makes a nice, burry sound that says MANSCOOT. (is that an oxymoron?)
- REALLY uneven and aggressive engine braking at low speeds, which took a little adjusting to. it's kinda motorcyclish, kinda not. it's not terrible, but it gets a little lurchy-draggy when pulsing/releasing the throttle in low-speed stop-and-go. (maybe there's some ducati in its blood? naaah.)
- i still kinda miss the sportcity 250
so far, the honeymoon holds. the lurchy low-speed engine braking is the really only rough spot, but it doesn't throw me off and is eminently tolerable. this might be due to the new wet clutch?
any other owners have longer term experience with the bv350? anything i should look out for? i think i'll want a bigger windscreen at some point. any preferred saddlebags for it?