Moped or scooter for commuting?

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by scorch, May 1, 2011.

  1. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    I wanted your input on these 2 beasts. i been thinking of getting a scooter for a while, but then i started researching mopeds as well, and you can get them very cheaply from craigslist. Ive seen them for 400-500$. I dont know much about them other than they are 30mph topspeed. But i understand they get better mpg than the 50cc equivalent scooters. Tomos is quite a big manufacturer, and i see tons of them everywhere, and from what i've heard they get over 120mpg per gallon.



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    advantages that i see from the moped are

    bigger wheels for city roads
    Better mpg than scooters
    cheaper price
    pedals(do you pedal these as well, i guess if you break down)
    small and easy to park


    scooters advantages
    more comfortable with more windprotection
    cute
    underseat compartment
    easier to ride with auto transmissions

    what does everyone think about these 2 modes of transportation. Id love to get something that got over 100mpg. I hate mixing oil and gas like the mopeds, but beggars cant be choosers.
    #1
  2. cdwise

    cdwise Long timer

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    I rode mopeds as a kid. I'll take a scooter any day as an adult but I'd suggest you try and do a test ride on each to see what fits you the best. FWIW, my son gets 100-105 mpg on his Genuine Buddy 125cc and it tops out at 72mph (flat road with a tail wind using gps but I really don't recommend going that fast and it really kills mpg when you do that or have a big cross wind, might knock it down to 80mpg)

    When I bought the Buddy it was mine and I wanted something that had enough get up and go to get up and out of the way if I needed to which is why I went with a 125cc over a 50.
    #2
  3. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    72mph on a 125cc buddy? pretty good record


    genuine makes good bikes, the 4 stroke stella on the website is claimed 140mpg, any truth to that? i have yet to heard from anyone if its real or not.
    #3
  4. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    also, why would you take a scooter any day? that is what im trying to find out.
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  5. MaineScoot

    MaineScoot Been here awhile

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    If you have a SYM dealer near you check out the Symba. It is the modern version of the Honda Cub. SYM made millions of Cubs for Honda before they started labeling them themselves. My Symba has been getting 97 mpg and it isn't even broken in yet. 17" wheels like the mopeds. 101 cc engine, top speed 55 or so.

    Here's mine, the red ones and black ones look better I think.
    [​IMG]
    #5
  6. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    the sym symba is indeed nice, on the website they list 150mpg at 25mph, and on fuelly they seem to get really good mileage. But i cant find any for sale around here.
    #6
  7. scmopar

    scmopar Been here awhile

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    most of the tomos mopeds I've ridden you HAD to peddel up any type hill the scooters seam to have more torque since its not pulling such a big tire
    #7
  8. tucsondude

    tucsondude Been here awhile

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    look at licsensing and insurance in your town.

    here all scooters need plates and insurance, if you are below 50cc and slap pedals on you do not need plates.

    what 50cc scooter does not get 100mpg? think you will really notice that extra 20?
    #8
  9. lilolita

    lilolita fahr mit mir

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    I prefer scooters over mopeds because of the hauling capabilities. Even without my milkcrate, I have built-in storage under the seat (waterproof) and the floorboards for carrying cat litter, cat food, mulch.

    My Honda Met (50cc) consistently got 105mpg. It topped out around 37mph. I rode 3 years and sold it for what I paid for it; they seem to keep their value if you buy wisely.

    If you like the looks of the Symba, look for a Honda Passport or Honda C70. There are a lot around and you shouldn't have to pay more than $1000 for a decent condition runner that won't need a thing. You can also check out the Honda Trail or Honda CT90; that's the more dirt-oriented version of the Honda Cub/Passport. Both have large rear racks that can hold a big milkcrate.

    My Buddy 150 gets about 80mpg; I ride all winter so I think that knocks it down some. I also don't have a windshield. Good luck!
    #9
  10. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    I rode with a guy who has a newer Zuma 125 with EFI and he said he regularly gets over 100 mpg - plus it can do 55 mph + easily.

    I have a vintage Yamaha bike that is a 55 cc 2-stroke with a 4-speed tranny. I rode it in city traffic (speed limts 30-45 mph) last night and it sucks - plus it's downright dangerous IMHO. Not sure how the performance compares to a modern 50 cc scoot but the slightest hill or headwind drops the speed down significantly.
    #10
  11. redhandmoto

    redhandmoto Been here awhile

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    Tomos mopeds are fun; I had an ST model (no pedals) in the stable, but the down side is that you almost have to install new sprockets to get a decent top end and an aftermarket pipe to help performance overall. Check out www.mopedarmy.com for all things moped.

    My 2 cents: 4-stroke scoot of at least 125cc will keep you happier longer.

    But moped are lotsa fun - they are very amenable to farkling & upgrades (70cc kit, etc.), but there's more fun in them than utility (depending on your needs).
    #11
  12. bvardi

    bvardi Probably not Deciduous

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    I've owned a couple of Tomos mopeds (last one was brief ownership - bought it for the Mad Bastard Scooter rally and did 21 hours on the thing during the rally)

    If you add performance pipes/sprocket to the Tomos you'll probably find it doesn't handle steep hills very well (depending on your body weight) but it is (in my experience, with the A3/A35 engined models) a very simple dead reliable little machine and great for something bought at $400 that you don't have to fret about parking in an exposed location.

    They're also fairly easy to work on (basically you're talking a lawnmower engine strapped to a beefed up bike frame) which can be an advantage.

    If you buy one also you'll likely sell it for about the same you paid for it - so if you want something low budget, you can give it a try for a year and not be out anything.

    That being said - these days I find 125cc to 200cc is my commuter comfort zone (with maybe 200-250 being ideal) - but I like the ability to hop onto the local highway for stretches if I need to.
    #12
  13. vortexau

    vortexau Outside the Pod-bay

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    Don't know why anyone would prefer combustible fuel over electricity, when looking at mopeds, or powered-bicycles.

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    From bicycle types to ones more scooter-like, if you want cheap 25-30mph commuting that is fairly maintenance-free the e-bikes have it all over the smoke-trail bikes.
    #13
  14. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    Electric vehicles have very limited range. If you ever have a power outage, like we just did in Northern Alabama for several days, anyone with an electric vehicle would be SOL.
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  15. 2speed

    2speed Puching adventurer

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    The difference is really dependent on your commute.

    How many miles?

    How many hills?

    What type of roads?

    A moped would be good for 5 miles-10 miles, no hills, backroads. I mean I've done 100+ mile trips on a moped but it's not fantastic. It will be also cheaper to license and insure most likely. Otherwise just get the scooter.
    #15
  16. vortexau

    vortexau Outside the Pod-bay

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    True, but the e-bikes have pedals for extended riding. Good exercise on the flat stretches!
    [​IMG]

    One more reason to Go Green! I do recall cases of fuel strikes & shortages which can (similarly) handicap riders of fuel burners. :wink:
    #16
  17. lifer

    lifer Been here awhile

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    Your charging station probably cost more than the scoot you have. You have not addressed the battery usage. How long will your battery last before it needs to be replaced and how much will it cost to replace. If you go 20 miles from home can you get back home on a charge. If I was going to stay no more than a couple miles from home I would consider one but otherwise there are too many draw backs. Most of the E scoots I have read about top out at 25 mph so going up a hill is what 15?
    #17
  18. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    Bicycles are much more practical if you want to pedal. I suspect those e-bikes are too heavy to be very practical for pedaling. I don't even see any pedals on the scooter in the above picture.

    How many electric vehicle owners will invest in a solar power recharging station?

    Without electricity gas stations can't pump fuel however a 75MPG scooter and a 5 gallon can of gas will keep you going for quite a while.

    Some day electric vehicles may actually be practical for more than a small number of people but for now I'll stick with my gas burning toys:D
    #18
  19. danny6bikes

    danny6bikes Adventurer

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    Tuscondude makes a good point. As a fellow MD resident, my understanding is that anything over 50cc needs tags, insurance and a motorcycle license to operate. I have a C70 Passport that I periodically commute on (7 miles round trip) and the only thing that I would add is that commuting on a vehicle that tops out at 35mph is not for the faint of heart! ( it is fun though :D)
    #19
  20. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Yes we need a little info on your commute.

    Mopeds are great for inner city commuting, on busy roads especially with bike lanes.

    A stock moped will be extremely slow, topping out at around 35 MPH or so. Acceleration is also limited. Their advantage is in most states laws are pretty lean on them.

    A stock 50 cc scooter won't do much better though. Top speed will be slightly higher, maybe 40-45 MPH on a good model, but acceleration will likely be close or the same.

    So if your commutes not to long, in a scooter friendly area, or is on mainly roads with limits no more than 45 MPH either will work.

    As for MPG, yea a moped will beat a scooter. I am unsure why, I believe its due to the CVT tranny vs a 1 speed tranny, as the RPMS are always very high to compensate for the poor low end torque. But you'll have better take off.

    I'd take a look at the passport type underbones, as these are a mix of both a moped and scooter. No pedals, but they look somewhat like a moped and get over 100 MPG like one.

    But they offer many scooter features, and have a 3 or 4 speed tranny.
    #20