New scoot for my daughter

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

  1. beverclan

    beverclan Zip'n Onwards

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    Hi all,

    I've been dropping in to this forum for a while. I'm usually on a bigger GS motorcycle, but I've always loved scooters and they're the biggest bike I can get my wife on [​IMG] so they've always had special place for us.

    My daughter in San Diego wants to buy a scooter to commute to school, 50cc, and has my support (how could I not say "yes" if I'm already on a bike), but I have no clue about scooters except for a couple of wonderful adventures in Key West on bikes I don't even remember the names of.

    I'd appreciate any advice you could give me on what she should buy.
    #1
  2. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    San Diego is a good town for scooting. any idea why she want's a 50cc, however? here in cali it will require an MC permit or license, regardless. so i thought i would ask since some good 125cc scooters cost around the same as a 50cc. also, budget considerations if you have any?

    also, when she gets it tell her to check out the San Diego Scooter Squadron. good 'peeps there :)

    http://www.meetup.com/sd-scooters/

    here they are "invading" a 7-11 lol

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/eOj8bleG9AU" allowfullscreen="" width="480" frameborder="0" height="390"></iframe>

    alright, down to business. so many good scooters out there....and what she should buy depends on what fits her best and what she wants. ANY of the below scooters are 50cc and around $2000, give or take. all are good, reliable brands

    Honda Metropolitan 50cc
    Genuine Buddy 50cc (derestricted will reach 45mph)
    Yamaha Vino "Classic," Yamaha Zuma 50cc, Yamaha C3
    Kymco People 50 (16in wheels)
    Kymco Like 50 (big classic style scoot)
    Kymco Sento 50 (kinda meh but ok)
    Kymco Super 8 50 (sporty looks)
    Sym Fiddle II 50
    Sym Milo

    man, i can go on ALL DAY :eek1

    on the "top end" of the price spectrum for quality scoots is a 50cc Vespa at $3200. on the low end a Kymco Agility 50 at $1399. in the "middle" of that range is a Honda Ruckus 50 at $2600. and another good lower priced choice would be a Lance Cali Classic 50 at around $1600

    of course she needs a dealer nearby, too. so it may simply come down to that so far as brand. some of these scooters come with 2 year unlimited mile warranties, and the Genuine model also includes two year roadside assistance which includes extraction

    and of the 125's at around $2000?

    Lance Cali Classic 125 ($1999)
    SYM Fiddle II 125 ($2300)
    Kymco Agility 125 ($1799)
    Kymco Super 8 150 ($2400)

    other good deals in a 125cc are the Genuine Buddy 125 ($2700 and many are closing out the 150's for the same) and the BEST deal atm in scoot land might be the Kymco Like 200i (163cc) at $2600. it used to be $3400. i have also read some Yamaha Vino's are going for around $2500OTD

    so, just a bit of info and facts for you. and don't forget the gear and accessories!
    #2
  3. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    A 50cc scooter will limit where she can ride due to fairly low top speeds. If she does ride on roads with higher speed limits she will have traffic trying to pass or just whizzing by. Personally I think a 125-150 scooter would be safer and more practical UNLESS she is just going to use it to go to school and the roads she will be on have low speed limits.

    I don't know about California but around here dealers still have lots of 09 scooters that they are selling at really low prices. I got an 09 Kymco Super 8 150 for $2200 OTD.
    #3
  4. beverclan

    beverclan Zip'n Onwards

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    This'll give me a good start! Methinks she thinks that a 50cc doesn't require a license, but if it does, I agree, 125cc is safer. And I'll check on the '09 150cc. I'll start trolling for dealers in her area next, because that's a very good point about having one nearby. [​IMG]
    #4
  5. lilolita

    lilolita fahr mit mir

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    Motorsport Scooters...I've heard nothing but outstanding comments about them. They're old-timers in the San Diego scooter market. I suspect that used scooters hold onto their value in southern CA so it may not hurt so much to buy new.

    I'm a big, big fan of the Buddy 125/150 (and coming 170 with FI) for its reliability and cute factor. It's gotten me special parking on my campus under the watchful eyes of security. I hope your daughter loves the scoot as much as you and your wife!
    #5
  6. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    i know SD has a very reputable Vespa / Genuine shop. maybe a couple that sell Genuine scooters. the Genuine Buddy is going to be 170cc and fuel injected for model year 2011, but those scoots haven't shipped yet. however dealers need to make room for all the new stock so are giving good deals on the continuing Buddy 125 and the out going 150's

    its a good small scooter with a warranty that will see her through the first two years of college. prices from what i see tend to be around $2500 - $3000 "out the door" on leftover 2009 and 2010 stock. good prices considering MSRP is $2700 for a 125 and $3200 for the 150, respectively

    they are real workhorse scooters, and typically found at "scooter only" shops. this usually helps take the dickering out of the deal. just make an offer or pay an already discounted price. if they are discounted. otherwise make a low offer and most likely come away with a good scoot at a good price

    i think they make great "girl" scooters, too :D

    Genuine Buddy 125

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Genuine Buddy International 150 "Pamplona" Edition (also available in Powder Blue (St Topaz Edition) and Seafoam Green (Italia Edition)

    [​IMG]

    and as you can see from this ad the typical discount on 2009 125's is fairly nice. full warranty, and a great rider community included. these are fairly top notch scooters imo :1drink

    http://redding.craigslist.org/mcd/2338917510.html
    #6
  7. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    i think i should point out a new law here in Cali states if a rider is under 21 years of age they must complete and pass a MC safety course such as MSF before they even get a permit

    thats right, BEFORE they can even get a learners permit for an MC. this would include a 50cc scooter (comsidered a "motor driven cycle"), and in fact includes just about EVERYTHING in Cali on two wheels with a motor outside a moped, electric bike, or GoPed

    after six months they can get their license. during that six months the restrictions are no passenger / night riding / freeway
    #7
  8. beverclan

    beverclan Zip'n Onwards

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    DudeClone, thanks I really appreciate the info. She's over 21, but still a student at UCSD. I am going to insist on MSF training and basic protective gear (helmet, gloves, jacket), because I have the power of the purse string still [​IMG] and am a firm believer in two-wheel education (I still attend instruction track days with my local club).
    #8
  9. Queen

    Queen Long timer

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    I'll second the recommendation of a Buddy, we have two - a 125 and a 150 St. Tropez. They are both '08's and we run the heck out of them, we work at the local university and I can't think of better commuter vehicles. :thumb
    #9
  10. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    I also suggest a 125-150 cc scoot. A Buddy 125 or 150 would work well. They look cool and have that cute touch to them that might appeal to her, yet perform pretty well with a top speed of around 60 MPH and decent pep. They are also small and easy to maneuver like a 50 cc scooter.


    If she wants to ride a lot of high speed road I'd look into a 250 cc scoot, but a smaller model like an Elite 250 or People 250.

    A 50 cc would be fine at first, but believe me she'd get bored with it very fast. Their VERY VERY slow, you have to floor it just to get to 35 MPH and will still get cut off and honked at all over the place. Hills and wind just plain suck on these.
    #10
  11. Motovista

    Motovista Parts is Parts

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    Because all scooters are treated equal in California, a 50cc scooter really doesn't make sense. We have a Kymco Vitality 50 4T, and my wife used to ride it from Ojai to Santa Barbara on Highway 150, and drivers were much more hostile and aggressive than here, where the laws favor 50cc scooters and people are used to them. Any 125-150 cc scooter would be fine, and girls love the Yamaha Vino 125, which is one of the most solidly built scooters in it's class.

    FWIW, today we had the mechanic from a competing shop come over on one of the Chinese 150s that they've done some "performance" work on, and being the professionals that we are, we decided that the best way to see how good their performance work is was to race it down highway 17 with my Yamaha Zuma 50 (more or less). The Zuma absolutely smoked the Chinese 150, even with their heavier mechanic riding it, and ours riding the Chinese 150. The 150 was quicker taking off, but once the Zuma got up on the pipe, it passed and just kept pulling away. When we did this, I was of the mindset that the 150 would be faster, but I didn't know how much faster.
    We added up how much we spent on the go fast stuff, and we're in it less than $1000 retail for parts. We do premix now, but the bike is just so damn much fun. Even with the taller gears in the final drive, it wheelies with ease, and the brakes and suspension are solid now.
    I will post pics if I ever figure out how.
    #11
  12. beverclan

    beverclan Zip'n Onwards

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    Moped Medic, please let me know. I don't know scooters, but did you mean to say that a Zuma 50cc outclassed a Chinese 150cc (or was this a misprint, and the Zuma is a 150cc)? Thanks.
    #12
  13. cdwise

    cdwise Long timer

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    Buddy 125-150cc would be my recommendation. Ours is 5 years old and my son has ridden it to school daily for the last 3 of those. Back when I bought it (for me) I debated about a 50cc or a slightly bigger scoot and have been really happy with the decision to go to the 125 Buddy.

    I should mention that ours is the discontinued cream color that my son thought was "too girly" so he spent $124 and replaced half the tupperware so its a two tone with black where the red on the Paloma is. Looks good and unlike some of the other scoots body panels are inexpensive.

    Absolutely reliable, other than regular oil changes the only issue we've had in the entire time was replacing a mirror - my son banged it on a wall popping it up on the center stand too close to a brick wall & an issue with the rack. They've changed he design of the tail rack since we bought ours and the newer version doesn't have the same weld issue. 2 year factory warranty that includes pick-up for the cost of a toll call but we never needed it and I know few who have. Our local dealer says the most common call he gets is a dead battery where someone left the key on.

    We went with the 125cc because too many people here go 10 mph (or more) over the speed limit and I wanted enough reserve to be able to get out of the way if needed.

    As for the comment earlier about a 50cc Zuma smoking a 150cc chinese scoot - I find that very credible. A few folks around here have bought the low cost chinese scoots from the local "discount" street and they run like crap rarely lasting more than 1,000 miles. Finding anyone to work on them is extremely difficult too. One of the guys in our scooter group started off with a 250cc chinese knock-off of a Kymco scoot, it couldn't keep up with the 80cc Honda Elite another rider had. It could barely out perform the 50cc Honda Metropolitian.
    #13
  14. Coopdway

    Coopdway Curiouser

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    Go with a Buddy, I loved mine but sadly had to get rid of it due to being pinched $-wise. Selling it was the fastest way to recover but I was heartbroken.

    Mine was pink and EVERYone loved it, talk about making friends........

    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    As for a chinese 150 cc vs a Zuma 50. Its true for the LOW END china scoots. I hear the Lance 150 cc only maxes an indicated 50 MPH, so on GPS thats around 45 MPH or less! With a couple mods a Zuma 50 2 stroke will exceed this speed and likely out accelerate it.

    cdwise, I don't think a Met or Zuma 50 will beat a 250 cc china scoot. In reliability, yes, but as for performance, no way! They actually perform decent, the water cooled models will hit 70+ MPH.

    I would recommend a 125 cc as well or possibly a 150 cc. Just stay away from low end china scoots.
    #15
  16. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    gotta LOVE the Buddy!

    however i also want to throw in a word for the Honda Elite. much as i hate to because i think the Elite is a boring Piaggio Fly wannabe, dealers have had them on sale (Honda incentive package) for $2500. some have been letting them go for that amount "out the door," too. sometimes they go for a bit more, sometimes a bit less

    linked brakes, liquid cooled, fuel injection, lots of storage, 108cc. it'll get up to 50mph quite readily and should be reliable with excellent fuel economy

    the thing is i have reservations about Honda Stealerships. just when you think you are getting a good deal you walk into a powersports place and see a mark up of $1000. so that $2500 scoot is all of a sudden $3700 and you gotta deal with the whole "let me go talk to my manager" thing. which sucks. also if asking MSRP for the Elite its just $400 from a PCX 125 which is a fair amount more desirable

    Honda, wtf are you thinking with these pricing schemes! :hmmmmm

    that said if i were in the market for a small scooter i would still get a Genuine Buddy over the Honda Elite, Piaggio Fly, or any other small commuter scooter. people say "Honda is reliable." so is Genuine. people say "that Honda will last forever!" well, its a small scooter so really now! do you really need it to? same goes for resale value. and the Buddy 125 or 150 will absolutely smoke the Elite and beat it up hills, merging into traffic, etc. its just way more fun to ride imo. a real hoot

    second choice would be the Kymco Like 200i as Kymco is holding the line on its $2600 asking price and is pricing the new "LX" with different paint schemes and trim just $100 higher. impressive "big" small scoot for the price imo
    #16
  17. beverclan

    beverclan Zip'n Onwards

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    Thanks to all of you for the continuing input! [​IMG] Sent my daughter the link to this thread (when I opened it). I'm hoping that when she sees all of this she'll set up her own ID and join us in this discussion. She has final say in this discussion.

    I found Dallas Vespa here in the Metromess, and went for a ride on a Buddy 125 today. What a blast, you are right about it being a good scoot! Talking to them it appears that the 50 is the same size but with a much smaller motor and front brake, and they were also telling me that the 50 is too small for any roads over 35mph.

    Speaking of brakes, I took it up to 40 and then "slammed" it to a stop (did the exponential ease on and tighten quickly but smoothly, remembering that the left lever is a brake, not a clutch, not motorcycle norm). I practice emergency stops at least once a month on my R1150GS, and I was really IMPRESSED at how quickly it braked!

    DudeClone, I'll check out the Honda and Kymco, thanks.
    #17
  18. btcn

    btcn Long timer

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    Yes the buddy 125 is a great overall little scoot!

    Its great for girls and guys alike! Its kinda has that "cute" appeal that girls like and isn't to big or heavy and intimating, yet any guy with self confidence can have a blast on it! It'll run at 60+ MPH and cruise at 45 MPH all day long.

    Yep the brakes are great. I wish my scoot had a disk up front! These old drums on my 86 Elite 150 suck! I've done two brake jobs and have them adjusted perfectly, and you have the pedal all the way down and it slowly take the speed down. Scary when the light turns red at the last second and you have to depend on em to stop you! So good brakes should definitely be taken into account.

    The Elite 110 is also a fine scoot. Its slower than the buddy by just a little, tops around 50+ MPH, but its only 108 cc. Its a good price and also has disk brakes up front. Its also small and agile, not a lot bigger than a 50 cc either. One nice thing is it offers PGMFI, although the Buddies carb does just fine.

    But yea its up to her. She should just go check out a few scoots and find which suits her best.
    #18
  19. hexnut

    hexnut Been here awhile

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    Don't forget the Kymco People 150. There are some killer deals on them around here.

    The one I have is a runner. Its quick for a 150. Its perfect for around town and the secondary roads here are 45 to 50 MPH so it works there as well. It also has a front disc brake and 16 inch wheels and comes with a two year warranty.
    #19
  20. DudeClone

    DudeClone Long timer

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    ^ yeah i was gonna mention the People 150, too. heck all kinds of scoots can be recommended once past a certain price point. but my initial recs were for 125-150cc priced close to 50cc scoots, since i figured budget might be a consideration

    and i prefer smaller wheeled scooters :p

    but yeah the People 150 is awesome. Consumer Report top scooter pick 2009, and lots of great reviews from all over. but NOW they have it priced above a Like 200i! which is ok, i guess. but it seems sort of screwy, too

    so yeah, discounts, anyone? :deal
    #20