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Old 10-25-2012, 07:55 PM   #16
klaviator
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I wouldn't hesitate to ride my Sport City 250 up any paved road that I have ridden in the past on any of my bikes, and I have done a lot of mountain riding all over the country. My Super 8 150 actually loses less going up hills than my Sport City although it has less speed to start with. Yes, manual transmissions do outperform automatics in every way except for convenience but I don't agree that you need a maxi scooter to climb mountains. It all depends on how fast you want to go.

Bigger isn't always better.
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Old 10-25-2012, 08:58 PM   #17
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I have to admit, the SC250 seems kind of like a small motorcycle, which is a good thing. I was reading about wheel wobble on the AF1 forum, any comment Klaviator? I have seen your threads and it seems to be a fine bike. The local dealer has one leftover SC250 so I may see what kind of deal they can offer.
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Old 10-25-2012, 10:52 PM   #18
larrylarry75
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Hills and all that other stuff

I have a Vespa 250ie and a Piaggio MP3 500. Both climb hills, both handle good, both get great gas mileage and both are OK on freeways. The MP3 500 is definitely more capable of touring, rides nicer, handles better, cost a little bit more. [Make that a lot more.] I like them both but they're not the same critter, same as bikes, no two alike.

Here's a little test you could try when you're out for a drive before you decide on your scooter: Whenever you see a side road ask yourself "Would I ride my _[fill in the model]_ on that road? You need to be extremely honest with yourself when you do this because you'll find yourself wanting to ride in places that your scooter of choice may not be friendly to. Gravel can be a nightmare for some, mud for others, grooved pavement, really steep hills, etc. You should be getting the picture by now. All too often we make buy decisions based on unrealistic expectations so do your best to focus on real world riding that goes beyond what you think you might do.

One of the guys made the statement that scooters cost more to own than cars. I expect that may be true for him or he wouldn't have said it, but for me that's not the case. I imagine there are others who might take exception to that also but such is the nature of forums, you get all sorts of divergent opinions all of which are based on unassailable facts. I only mention this with the hope you will take all that you hear with a grain of salt. As for the poster who made the statement please don't feel I want to debate this with you, we all have our own thoughts and ideas and the purpose of this thread is to inform and present that information without prejudice.

Bottom line is you'll enjoy owning and riding a scooter no matter which one you decide on. I think if you can afford at least a 250 that would be a good choice but if not you'll still have a lot of fun on a smaller rig, it just might take a bit longer to get where you're going.

Happy hunting.

LL75
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Old 10-26-2012, 05:07 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by GREY.HOUND View Post
I have to admit, the SC250 seems kind of like a small motorcycle, which is a good thing. I was reading about wheel wobble on the AF1 forum, any comment Klaviator? I have seen your threads and it seems to be a fine bike. The local dealer has one leftover SC250 so I may see what kind of deal they can offer.
At certain speeds, if I take my hands off the bars, the front end will shake. I have owned several motorcycles that did this. It's not a big deal. Just don't ride with no hands. Perhaps some sport city's are worse than mine, I don't know. It also seems worse with a Sava tire up front than with the Maxxis that came on it. I'll probably get another brand of tire when I replace it. I have read that it is a bigger problem with Vespa's yet plenty of people still buy and love their Vespas.

You have also probably read that Piaggio, which includes Vespa and Aprilia, has bad parts support. I haven't experienced this. I have had no problems getting parts and they seem to be more reasonably priced than Kymco parts.

I paid 3500 plus tax for mine and I have read that they sold as low as 3K plus tax. If you can pick one up in that price range you will be getting a deal that is hard to match with any other new scooter or motorcycle.
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Old 10-26-2012, 08:43 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by klaviator View Post
At certain speeds, if I take my hands off the bars, the front end will shake. I have owned several motorcycles that did this. It's not a big deal. Just don't ride with no hands. Perhaps some sport city's are worse than mine, I don't know. It also seems worse with a Sava tire up front than with the Maxxis that came on it. I'll probably get another brand of tire when I replace it. I have read that it is a bigger problem with Vespa's yet plenty of people still buy and love their Vespas.

You have also probably read that Piaggio, which includes Vespa and Aprilia, has bad parts support. I haven't experienced this. I have had no problems getting parts and they seem to be more reasonably priced than Kymco parts.

I paid 3500 plus tax for mine and I have read that they sold as low as 3K plus tax. If you can pick one up in that price range you will be getting a deal that is hard to match with any other new scooter or motorcycle.
We have 2 SC250's that we bought back in July. They will both get a little head shake on deceleration if you take your hands off the bars. I asked my wife if she noticed this and her reply was "No, I never take my hands off the bars." I thought this was good advice. I don't notice any shake any more.

I would not hesitate to recommend the Aprilia SC250. They are terrific little bikes. Not sure if there are dealers still sitting on any 2009 leftovers, but we picked ours up for $3035 each out the door (including all taxes, setup, tag, etc...).
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Old 10-28-2012, 01:06 PM   #21
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FWIW, our Sports City has lived most of its life in Breckenridge, CO where we go 1000' in elevation just to get to and from a gas station since our house is at 10,800. Riding 20 miles can mean as much as 4,000' elevation change - zero problems. Okay, going over a couple of the passes it maxes out climbing the grades at 50-55 is but since the speed limit is 45-50 max that isn't big issue and it has more get up and go than many of the 4 cyl cars we pass.

Currently it is in California. We took it out 15 months ago for our son to use at university in San Luis Obispo. My husband rode it out and no problems with elevations ranging from sea level to around 13,000'. I've experienced no head shake or wobble on it at all nor has either my husband and son reported any. I have had a some on the BV 500 but balancing the tires solved it there. Had the occasional wobble on the Vespa GTS but usually checking and adjusting tire pressure solved it. I did put heavier bar end weights on which also helped (and recommended since I also have a top case on all of the scoots.)

If the Sports City fits your body and riding position (I feel like I'm too over the handle bars a la sports bike but my husband and son both love it) get it. If yours turns out to have a wobble check the front tire and possibly add heavier bar weights but I haven't seen enough reports where it was a problem to be concerned about it. The only parts availability issue I've heard about was windscreens but that doesn't appear to be an issue anymore. My brother's fiance got an OEM from the local dealership (2 weeks or so for delivery) and AF1 has the Pugh in stock which has been highly recommended. We'll get one or the other before riding it back from California when he's no longer going to school there. May even get one before that since I may take it to Amerivespa next summer and I want a windshield on it if I'm going to ride over 50mph on it for my comfort.
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Old 10-28-2012, 01:34 PM   #22
HammerMacGreed
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Aprilia Scarabeo 500

Doing public utilities in the central valley, my territory goes from Big Sur- Fort Ligget- Pinoche Valley (40 miles east of Hollister- Fremont- San Carlos- Half Moon Bay- Santa Cruz. Some great twisty roads in there, but with all the cracks, tar snakes and rocks you're gonna want big wheels. Dual disks up front will help too, especially with all the deer, tourists and stationary road hazards. Head light following the front wheel (instead of frame fairing mount) will come in handy at night on twisty roads. Smaller fairing/ side profile is gonna help with those horrendous 2pm cross winds near Greenfield. Comfy 2up seat if/when you can get your wife on the back. Enough power for 2up riding. Heard they get 55-60mpg too.

http://www.totalmotorcycle.com/photo...rabeo500ie.htm
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Old 10-28-2012, 02:09 PM   #23
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Passed the MSF Basic Rider course this weekend, woo hoo. Took it on a Honda Elite 80. Needless to say, I was the hit of the class and did my best to be an ambassador for scooters.

CDWISE, we spend quite a bit of time near SLO, at the nearby beaches. Cal Poly is a great school; a handful of my friends graduated from there.

Sportcity is still in the picture, as well as the PCX 150, despite it's size. I really like that scooter (PCX). Also, the local piaggio/aprillia/vespa dealer has an MP3 250 so I may take it for a test drive if I can. I actually like the MP3 400 for its size, but hard to find.

I'm going to make a trip to the Vespa dealer in Elk Grove to get a good look at them.
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:48 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdwise View Post
FWIW, our Sports City has lived most of its life in Breckenridge, CO where we go 1000' in elevation just to get to and from a gas station since our house is at 10,800. Riding 20 miles can mean as much as 4,000' elevation change - zero problems. Okay, going over a couple of the passes it maxes out climbing the grades at 50-55 is but since the speed limit is 45-50 max that isn't big issue and it has more get up and go than many of the 4 cyl cars we pass.
The SportCity might handle that kind of climb, but a Vino 125 or Zuma 125 won't even come close. I doubt the PCX150 would either, but I haven't ridden one. If it will, I bought the wrong scooter.
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Old 11-02-2012, 09:32 AM   #25
darmahman
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Vespa 300 the $ won't matter in a year when you will be blissfully happy you bought the Vespa...
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Old 11-02-2012, 02:54 PM   #26
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Question Big Wheels

Just to add to the mess I'm surprised none of the other big wheel scoots have come up.
In the used market aka more bang for buck & less painful when you drop it..the HD200, Kymco people 250, & the Honda SH150I come to mind. I have an HD around, it does do freeway speeds. The people 250 has similar power to weight, & the SH150I is a similar class, not quite as powerful, but a solid machine. It was the other half of the 50/50 success of Honda scooters a couple years ago. The PCX125 was the winner in that round, & the PCX 150 is the followup on that. Personally I liked the SH150 a bit more, but heck I wasn't buying at the time so there ya go .
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Old 11-02-2012, 02:55 PM   #27
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The SportCity might handle that kind of climb, but a Vino 125 or Zuma 125 won't even come close. I doubt the PCX150 would either, but I haven't ridden one. If it will, I bought the wrong scooter.
Well I see plenty of Genuine Scooter Buddys and Vespa 50-150cc around Breckenridge (elevation 9,603'). They seem to handle it fine though not necessarily at speeds of more than 35mph which is what Boreas Pass (elevation 11,481') is posted at as long high as it is paved, once it goes to dirt then it drops. True coming up from the the south Hoosier Pass is 45-50mph which they won't maintain but going up from Breckenridge is 10mph in many places.

I'll admit to being surprised when I was talking to the owner of a 50cc Vespa ET 2 who said he and his wife regularly ride 2 up to the top of Boreas for picnics without issue but he did say 2 up it does max out between 30 & 35. I'm considering picking up a Ruckus or Madass for my youngest next summer so we'll see how they do if I do.
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Old 11-02-2012, 04:51 PM   #28
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I've over complicated things, I just need to get one already and ride it, then when ready for something bigger get it. I'd prefer to buy locally so that limits my choices, but within 4 hours drive my choices are endless. There is an SYM dealer 135 miles away that might get a visit. I do prefer the 16" wheels.
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Old 11-02-2012, 07:26 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by cdwise View Post
Well I see plenty of Genuine Scooter Buddys and Vespa 50-150cc around Breckenridge (elevation 9,603'). They seem to handle it fine though not necessarily at speeds of more than 35mph which is what Boreas Pass (elevation 11,481') is posted at as long high as it is paved, once it goes to dirt then it drops. True coming up from the the south Hoosier Pass is 45-50mph which they won't maintain but going up from Breckenridge is 10mph in many places.

I'll admit to being surprised when I was talking to the owner of a 50cc Vespa ET 2 who said he and his wife regularly ride 2 up to the top of Boreas for picnics without issue but he did say 2 up it does max out between 30 & 35. I'm considering picking up a Ruckus or Madass for my youngest next summer so we'll see how they do if I do.
My Vino 125 got down to 20 mph climbing a long steep grade, the engine was lugging badly, and it was detonating like crazy. I immediately turned around and went back. I'm quite certain I did some damage to the engine, but I have put over 10,000 miles on it since then with no problems. These scooters DO have plenty of power to climb anything, they just don't have low enough gearing to use that power. My Stella 150, which makes less power than the Yamaha 125s, climbs just fine, sometimes getting down to 10 mph in first gear, but with it's manual transmission, in first gear, the engine will keep spinning in the powerband, at about the same rpms that it is turning at full throttle at top speed on a level road. Climbing puts far more of a load on an engine than running WOT on a flat load.


To the OP, yeah, you are going to get all kinds of answers, maybe none of them right for you. I'm very happy with my Yamaha 125s for fairly level roads, accepting the fact that they can't go on the freeway. I have motorcycles for freeway use. If you need to climb mountains or go on freeways, you will need a much bigger scooter. Again, the Piaggio BV500 would be my choice. It is much smaller, and feels much more like a scooter than any of the huge maxi scooters. I found a Goldwing easier to ride than those. The BV is just a slightly larger version of a smaller scooter, same layout, and handles way better. And it has the power to climb and go on freeways, yet would not be a handfull around town. It is still a compromise, but a good one. Ideally, 2 scooters would work better, one for around town and local roads, and a bigger one for climbing and freeways. I have traveled long distances on small (125cc) scooters, and am about to do it again. You can cross the country on them, but you have to choose your route carefully. You can't just hop on the freeway and go.

If this is going to be your first motorized 2 wheeler of any kind, I would start out with a nice used 125-150cc scooter, have lots of fun with it, get used to riding, then you will be in a better position to know what you need when/if you decide to move up. You can get a nice scooter for $1000. If you were close by, I'd be happy to sell you my like new but high mileage, but well maintained Vino 125 for less than that. Runs AND looks like new.
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Old 11-03-2012, 06:00 AM   #30
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My Vino 125 got down to 20 mph climbing a long steep grade, the engine was lugging badly, and it was detonating like crazy. I immediately turned around and went back. I'm quite certain I did some damage to the engine, but I have put over 10,000 miles on it since then with no problems. These scooters DO have plenty of power to climb anything, they just don't have low enough gearing to use that power. My Stella 150, which makes less power than the Yamaha 125s, climbs just fine, sometimes getting down to 10 mph in first gear, but with it's manual transmission, in first gear, the engine will keep spinning in the powerband, at about the same rpms that it is turning at full throttle at top speed on a level road. Climbing puts far more of a load on an engine than running WOT on a flat load.


To the OP, yeah, you are going to get all kinds of answers, maybe none of them right for you. I'm very happy with my Yamaha 125s for fairly level roads, accepting the fact that they can't go on the freeway. I have motorcycles for freeway use. If you need to climb mountains or go on freeways, you will need a much bigger scooter. Again, the Piaggio BV500 would be my choice. It is much smaller, and feels much more like a scooter than any of the huge maxi scooters. I found a Goldwing easier to ride than those. The BV is just a slightly larger version of a smaller scooter, same layout, and handles way better. And it has the power to climb and go on freeways, yet would not be a handfull around town. It is still a compromise, but a good one. Ideally, 2 scooters would work better, one for around town and local roads, and a bigger one for climbing and freeways. I have traveled long distances on small (125cc) scooters, and am about to do it again. You can cross the country on them, but you have to choose your route carefully. You can't just hop on the freeway and go.

If this is going to be your first motorized 2 wheeler of any kind, I would start out with a nice used 125-150cc scooter, have lots of fun with it, get used to riding, then you will be in a better position to know what you need when/if you decide to move up. You can get a nice scooter for $1000. If you were close by, I'd be happy to sell you my like new but high mileage, but well maintained Vino 125 for less than that. Runs AND looks like new.
I don't agree that you need a big scooter to climb hills. My 150cc Super 8 does just fine and I have taken it up some super steep hills.

I do agree that getting a used 125-150 to start is a good idea. There is no way you can determine what will work for you until you get some riding experience. Getting advice from all of us will only get you so far since we all have widely differing opinions.

Let my add on more thing. Maintaining a scooter can be expensive if you don't do most or at least some of your own maintenance. Getting a small, inexpensive, and simple scooter is a good way to learn how to work on your scooter. My first scooter was my Kymco Super 8 which I bought almost two years ago. It is simple to work on and I have learned a lot from it. I'm glad I didn't start with my Aprilia which is much more complicated to work on.

So get a small scooter to start, ride it for a while, and then get the scooter you really want.
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