i don't get kymco scooters. (warning: useless opinion timewaster thread)

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by quasigentrified, Sep 19, 2013.

  1. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    alright, i know this is a potential troll/flame/jo momma topic, but i gotta get this one out of my system: i don't understand why you'd get a kymco scooter relative to the competition.

    quick context: i have a 2009 kymco people 250s as a generous loaner while some farkle work is done to one of my bikes. i'm using it to run errands today as the work completes.

    also, i'll acknowledge that many folks consider them to have a great reliability/price ratio. they're definitely a huge cut above chinese scoots.

    that said: they're uniformly ugly. they don't appear to offer anything but basic-to-average performance in my experience. the three i've ridden: the agility 125, the like 200i, and now the people 250s, feel really sluggish to get up to speed, the instrument clusters are dog-fugly, the plastic is pervasive and ill-fitted, and the style just screams cheap. i could tolerate this if they had SOME kind of personality or characteristic: an early bump off the line, or a unique exhaust note, or a even a pretty piece of styling.

    i have enjoyed all the piaggio brand scoots i've ridden and owned. even when strapped with plastic, like the fly and the sportcity, they have a cohesive visual style and a good finish that creates a strong identity. the piaggio engines, from the leader and quasar engines to the new 3v in the fly/vespa lx and the bv's crazy 330cc, always have a certain feel and character that makes them clearly italian and piaggio. alternatively, honda cvt engines seem more advanced and performant all-around, even if they lack a distinctive feel or note.

    i really do understand that kymco crams a good amount of modern features into their bikes at a good price range, and that the overall reliability is there. but is getting a good deal overall really worth such a boring riding experience, in my never humble opinion? i was reading the justgottascoot reviews and i couldn't find ANY quantifiable reason for the dude's enthusiam for the people 250 and 250s -- these bikes are heavy, slow off the line, ugly, and generally uninspiring to ride. compared to the sportcity 250 that runs the same price and is way quicker off the line (and has better midrange to boot), and ALSO has dual discs up front and much better fit-and-finish and style, why would folks be so enthusiastic for a similar price but triply blander experience?

    well, besides piaggio's godawful parts/service. (go ahad, quote that. :-()

    anyway, all my opinion, and lookin' to hear yours! i'm not looking to be convinced; i just like arguing scoots.
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  2. snakebit

    snakebit growing old disgracefully

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    I test rode a Kymco People 250 and wasn't impressed. The only thing I can really single out was the low speed steering was weird. Making a U turn in a parking lot once the bars got to a certain angle the front end seemed to take over and all off a sudden I went from pushing the bar for the turn to having to hold it back from increasing to a sharper turn then I wanted. Something about the front end geometry was odd.
    #2
  3. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    apparently the gti 300 is really good? love to try one sometime.

    edit: yeah, your people 250 experience mirrors mine with the 250s. it's a bit of a wobble at low speeds.
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  4. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    I have never owned a Kymco scooter, but I have ridden and worked on a few (mostly maintenance). There is one on my want list right now, a People GTi300. My biggest problem with this scooter is the potential for some seriously expensive electronic failure. Even on a scooter in this price range, I can't see spending $1000 to replace defective computer parts.

    The main reason I like Kymco scooters is their lower price and extreme reliability. I can get one locally OTD for under MSRP. After dealing with other name brand rip off dealers, that in itself is worth a lot to me. The other reason is the fact that they are utterly reliable, and will take me anywhere I want to go, without me having to worry about them breaking down. Parts are readily available and reasonably prices (except for the electronic stuff)

    No they don't have the charisma of European scoots, but neither do the Japanese scooters. And just like cars, I have never seen as Asian scooter that I really liked the looks of. They used to make some great motorcycles, but most of them are also ugly and completely bland. Some people seem to see this as "progress"

    My main use for a Kymco scooter would be travel. I have done most of my 500,000+ miles of riding on interstates. I have now found several other "non freeway" routes across the country, and a Kymco would be perfect for those. If you think a Kymco is boring, try a Goldwing. You might as well be in a car.


    When I want character, I take the Stella. You won't find more character than that. A vintage Vespa would be even better, and probably wouldn't break down as much. I just can't see any modern scooter, even a Vespa, having any real character. ALL newer scooters are so refined that they are no longer anything but transportation appliances. Why pay $1500 over MRSP for a Vespa, when you can get a Kymco for UNDER MSRP?

    So I guess my main reason for buying a Kymco is bang for the buck. You get a super high quality scooter for a LOT less money than any other brand, other than maybe SYM and Genuine. In my opinion, the "golden age" of scooters has long since passed. Actually this whole post is my opinion, and it is not intended to start an argument, just stating how I feel about it.
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  5. k3ith

    k3ith Been here awhile

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    I do kindof like the Downtown 300 and if I can find one used in a couple years may buy it as a cheaper version of a Forza. I'd never buy one new considering the depreciation, but then I've never bought a new bike or scooter. Most of their offerings are pretty fugly, but I've seen some rather unattractive bikes (IMO) from Italian and Japanese makers too.
    #5
  6. gogogordy

    gogogordy Long timer

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    Certain vehicles are appliances. The Toyota Corolla comes to mind. Damned fine car...no character, not sexy.

    Thats how I view KYMCO scooters, and I sold them for 3 1/2 years...all the while I rode my Vespa to the shop (parked in the back!)

    Great products those KYMCOs...but really an unremarkable riding experience.

    Italian cars and bikes have that...."X factor" I'll call it. A sexiness, an "X factor"...."there's just something about them" that seems to be unique to the breed.

    Most Asian products, at least the mainstream ones don't quite hit the mark, although they typically excel on the spreadsheet whereas the Italians are gonna break your heart, errrr wallet. But like a sexy lady you'll have a helluva good time spending money on her!
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  7. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    I would hardly call my Super 8 150 boring or ugly. I have only ridden 7-8 different scooters but I have ridden a couple of hundred different motorcycles. For running around town, my super 8 is the most fun bike I have ridden. It's more fun than my Sport city 250.

    Looks, of course are a matter of opinion.

    My Super 8 at Deals gap:

    [​IMG]

    For a second opinion lets ask John Burns of Cycle World:

    http://www.cycleworld.com/2010/11/15/kymco-super-8-150-first-ride/


    Personally, I think Kymco currently has the best overall lineup of scooters available in the U. S.
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  8. gogogordy

    gogogordy Long timer

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    Klaviator, you are a rider who gets the most out of whatever he rides, and I applaud you for that.

    I didnt dis on Kymco's styling one iota, and I miss the Kymco People 200S (163cc actually) as I thought it was the handsomest of large-wheelrs ever. For the record, I believe KYMCO is amongst the best built, if not the best built scooter out there.

    KYMCO could give classes to EVERY other PTW manufacturer on parts support. Bar none.

    That said, and I've ridden most KYMCO models sold from 2008 through 2012...none of them ever "talked" to me like the Italians do.
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  9. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    what differentiates the super 8, as 150cc rides go? honestly curious, especially when compared to honda's sh150i or pcx 150? this is all obviously purely subjective, but it's fun to discuss.

    given how dull and kinda clumsy this 2009 people 250s is relative to the sportcity, i'm shocked to hear you like the super 8 so much!
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  10. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    you'd argue that kymco builds a better scooter than honda or yamaha?
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  11. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    I haven't ridden either of the Honda's. When looking for my first scooter, I didn't even consider Honda because of the huge price difference. I wanted something small, inexpensive and simple to work on because I really didn't know that much about scooters. Now that I know more, I think I made the right decision.

    The Honda Sh150i looks like a nice scooter but I hate linked brakes and would be hard pressed to ever buy another bike that has them unless it also has ABS. Also, the SH was about twice the price of the Super 8.

    As for the PCX, great motor but I don't fit on it very well and again the linked brakes thing. I also don't really care for the styling of the PCX.

    Personally, I find that most Honda's built since the late 80s have been boring although I do like their quality, reliability and parts support. There have been a some exceptions but I have never owned any Hondas except some small dirt bikes for my son and a 200 Twinstar which was my wife's first bike.
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  12. Birdmove

    Birdmove Long timer

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    We have a 2008 SYM HD200 and a 2009 Kymco People 150 (now discontinued I understand). They are both fine scoots. The People has a classic look that some like, as I do. It is smaller, lighter, quicker handling than the SYM. The SYM is more stable, bigger and heavier, and has a more potent engine. But the People does a pretty good job for me. I take the SYM when I need to carry a lot, as it has a rear cargo box. I like the Super 8 150, but it has smaller diameter wheels. Our two both have 16" wheels. The Kymco has been very reliable, and is easier to work on being air cooled. The SYM is a pain to add coolant to. This should be an easy job.
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  13. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    It depends on how you define "better"

    If you are talking quality, then I would rate my Super 8 a step below Honda or Yamaha. However, the price difference and ease of maintenance more than makes up for it. However, the only small scooter either of these companies makes that I would even consider as a replacement for my super 8 would be the Zuma 125.

    As for the rest of the lineup, nothing currently in the Honda or Yamaha lineup (U.S.) even remotely appeals to me. On the other hand, I really like the Movie 150, DT300, and GT300. I think that the quality of the newer Kymco's is probably a match for Honda and Yamaha.

    OK, I really like the Grom but it's not a scooter.

    Also, I really like my Sport City but the Super 8 is just more pure fun, although not nearly as capable.
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  14. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    fair enough! i do dig the black wheels in that deal's gap shot you posted.
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  15. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    I would also like to add that I haven't ridden very many Kymco's. The People 200s I test rode had some sort of handling problem. The Xciting 250 was very pleasant but hardly exciting.

    Here are my thoughts on the other scooters I have ridden.

    Yamaha Riva 125. Rented it in Hawaii over 25 years ago. An absolute blast. Made me want to get a scooter.

    Honda Reflex. Pleasant scooter but hardly exciting.

    T max. Very capable but not what I was looking for.

    BV250. I liked it and may have bought one if not for the Sport City.

    That's it. I won't even go into the 200 or so motorcycles I have ridden.


    Edit: One thing I'll add. I haven't seen a Forza 300 in person so I'll reserve judgement on it.
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  16. gogogordy

    gogogordy Long timer

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    Certainly as good as, and once you factor in the price disparity well the nod goes to KYMCO for value and quality.

    BMW certainly thinks KYMCO builds engines of "BMW" quality!
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  17. quasigentrified

    quasigentrified Ape Trumpet

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    :deal
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  18. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    I do have one complaint about my Super 8


    I didn't work very good in the snow.


    [​IMG]


    :huh :rofl:rofl
    #18
  19. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    I would say the quality off most Taiwanese scooters is at least as good as the Japanese ones (both my Yamaha scooters were built in Taiwan)

    I have never owned an Italian bike or car. I will be buying a new car in the next few months, and the Fiat 500 is on my list. I have already test driven it, it's ok, but nothing more, just like all the other small cheap cars I test drove, Asian and American. My interest in the Fiat is that it is available as a 2 door model, one of only 2 in my price range that are, the other being the Toyota Yaris. But I am highly skeptical of both Toyota and Fiat quality. I plan to put a LOT of miles on this car, and need good gas mileage and reliability more than anything else.

    For some reason, most European bikes do not seem to have the reliability of Japanese and Taiwanese bikes. They have an image, a name, a heritage, an identity, and the status and cachet that go along with those. But that won't get you home. And because they are usually so much more expensive, I would be a lot more worried about getting a scratch on one.

    Just like the Vespa 946, which some find desirable beyond it's intended use as a motor vehicle. I do totally get that. But not with anything new. It has to be vintage to have that effect on me. A new bike or car might be desirable for what it means to others (in other words, something to show off on or in) but I have never had any emotional connection to anything built recently. Now a well built vintage Vespa, maybe even one with some performance tuning, could definitely push the right buttons for me. Even the recent PX150 has emotional appeal to me, being a Vespa and a manual shift 2 stroke . Just like my Stella, but much higher quality. They are already high dollar collectors items. But I don't really see anything that great about a modern 4 stroke CVT Vespa that makes it worth what it costs.


    And yes that comment about the Kymco engine in BMWs deserves a comment, since BMWs are mainly known for 2 things, being ridiculously expensive new, and breaking down. Hopefully the engine on the BMW scooters will not break down. It seems very possible BMW chose Kymco to build their engines, because they were not capable of building Kymco quality themselves.

    I have a Zuma 125, and my only complaint about it is it's electronics, but that is a big one. Because of that I have serious concerns about it's long term reliability. But it is a fun scooter to ride and it's performance is great for a 125. You can fly around cars with it in town. I haven't actually seen a Forza either, but it's not something I'd be interested in, it looks like a scaled down Silverwing. At 300cc, I would prefer a much shorter scooter. The GTi300 seems almost perfect, if it weren't for the FI.
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  20. gogogordy

    gogogordy Long timer

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    There's a fellow on Yarisworld.com with over 500k on his Yaris Jerry...amazing with normal, good maintenance just like you'd give yours, and only a couple of replacement components.

    I love my 2011 Yaris, its been a much more reliable, zero expense car than my former Mini Cooper S. No surprise (Not as sexy or fun to drive, but Im not into that in my cars anymore) but my goal is to keep it, and drive the hell out of for 10 to 15 years.

    The Yaris is built 100% in Japan, while the Fiats are built in Toluca Mexico. Just saying. If I were a betting man, Id put my money on the Yaris for both reliability and durability, but also lower cost of ownership.
    #20