Piaggio MP3

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by danger_dave, Feb 15, 2007.

  1. cbolling

    cbolling Here...Hold my Beer.

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    Thanks for the answers. I like the looks of the 500, but I really like the storage available on the 400. I am 6’1” and felt really camped on the one I sat on at the Bike Show. I am not sure which one it was though. I will have to go the dealership and sit on a couple of them.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
  2. Dabears

    Dabears Long Timer

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    3Wheelfun-

    I appreciate your summary. I just had a chance to sit on both the 400 and 500 at lunch today, and it looks like either one would be a blast.

    With a GS1200 currently I've been spoiled by storage space, so I'm drawn more to the 400 at this point. Thanks again for your input!
  3. RedRocket

    RedRocket Yeah! I want Cheesy Poofs

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    I've seen a few of these for sale on Craigslist, and they've has lowspeed lowsides. How does that happen?
    When I test rode one it felt like it would be nearly impossible to fall over while moving.
  4. 3wheelfun

    3wheelfun Adventurer

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    Aug 8, 2006
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    I think all those tip overs are at a stop or near stop. 1st off a lot of people purchase the MP3 as their first bike. Thinking it is a trike and does not need to be balanced. The tilt lock is fantastic but takes some getting use to. One problem is the bike is so well balanced that you sometimes think you have the lock on but do not, next thing you know you have 500lbs heading towards the floor. I really like the tilt lock and have not had a problem with it in about 12,000miles. I have a routine that I do every time I get on or off the bike. On the bike, start the bike and immediately turn off the lock, ready to roll just like a motorcycle. Parking, lock the front and wiggle the front to confirm, put on parking brake and shut off bike. Never, ever do I use it while riding, such as at stop signs. If I am not sure if it is on or not (on center stand) always pretend it is off.

    You would not believe how many guys ask me about the MP3 and say they are considering it for their wifes who have never ridden. It really is not a beginner bike or a bike for someone with disabilities. You still must balance the bike or pretty soon you are going down.

    Jill
  5. shikataganai

    shikataganai moof

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    348
    Location:
    Seattle
    Some shots of my MP3:

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    My review of it after 2700 miles over the last 5 months or so: thumbs up. It certainly attracts a lot of attention, it's been reliable, it has adequate storage, and has good pep around town. Downsides: throttle modulation with the CVT is sometimes unpredictable in slow parking lots, especially gravel, and 22 hp is a lot less than I eventually want.

    It'll do for the next few years… :D
  6. Rainmaster

    Rainmaster Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Georgia, USA
    Wife and I ended up at the local dealership in Atlanta and tested both the 400 and 500 back to back. We both come from cruisers and dual sports bikes and she wanted to find out what all the hoopla about the automatic and the two wheels up front was/is about. The dealership people could not have been more accommodating (really). It may have something to do about the showroom bursting at the seams with scooters of all kind sitting unsold and not many people looking. The test drive was for well over an hour and we covered some 25 miles in all kinds of roads. Our feeling is that if you test them back to back the 400 comes up as lacking. Both in power and suspension performance. The front end feels extremely heavy compared to a bike and it certainly does not felt like it drove or handled like a bike to us. Overall it feels very heavy. There is no gas tank at your knees to use as an anchor point to steady yourself as you lean, that was an odd feeling. I can see and felt the benefits of the two front wheels under braking, that was very impressive. but in the twisties it better be very smooth pavement or the front end is all over the place if you hit an obstruction with both wheels at the same time. I am sure that you can get used to it but coming from a regular bike that felling was not confidence inspiring. Out in the highway both can keep up with traffic very well and hitting an indicating 70 was not an issue(better on the 500). Both felt steady at these speed, no better or worse than any of our previous bikes. Eventually we came back and we are told that out the door either one is around $9,300.00. and there lies the problem for this vehicle. Nice as it is, it competes with the Majesty's and T-max's of the scooter world that list for a lot less and with some capable motorcycles like Triumph Bonnie's and BMW 650's or Kawasaki Versys or KLR's that again can be had for a lot less, needless to say I was suspecting that the cost to value formula was not working here. Then I did some more research on modern vespa and found owners reporting a myriad of problems (list at the end) and long lead time to get needed parts, and reports that Piaggio did not attended the latest west coast scooter/bike shows and my concern is the there will be no support in the near future (remember FIAT and Alfa Romeo) here in the US. I even ended up looking at several ebay auctions at dealer owned new 2009 MP3 500 units and no auction has done better than $5,000.00. In our minds the marketplace is reaching a conclusion that $9K is too much for these scooters. We are voting with our dollars also and will be buying something else.

    Reported problems on the Modern Vespa site:

    rusted screws
    water pump failures
    holes in hoses
    misalignment of plastic parts
    serious steering notch issue $$$
    hydraulic lock failure
    tilt lock electrics going awry
    warning lights going awry
    battery issues
    poor electrical connections
    corrosion of connections
    leaking clamps (areas)
    unknown electrical failures
    cold weather issues
    gasket failures
    fuses blowing
    won't start
    latch problems
    service manual poorly defined (hidden fuse)
    lack of communications from/Piaggio and dealers
    no communication from Piaggio to dealers
  7. larrylarry75

    larrylarry75 Aye Chihuahua

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    319
    Location:
    Southern OR coast
    Here's what's going on with my MP3 500is & UniGo trailer. So far no long rides, just getting it fine tuned for the upcoming summer ride. I like the quality of the UniGo, hope to do a long, long ride towing it.

    LL75

    Attached Files:

  8. Photog

    Photog Charismatic Megafauna

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    Cool! How's it working out so far? Seems like it'd be a great combo.

    How's your MP3-500 doing? :ear
  9. Oilhed

    Oilhed MarkF Supporter

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    Nice bike! Croton Res?
  10. Catskill

    Catskill tree hugger

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    Ride Faster I hear Banjos!
    I cant say enough good things about my husbands MP3500.

    few quick notes...

    1.) I love that you can still lean into turns
    2.) I love that you still have to have some talent to ride it, unlike trikes which are basically training wheels
    3.) I love the added security I feel when I get caught in the rain.



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    Now I have to admit the look of the 500 is what sold me on it. I mean no offense to the 250 and 400 owners but they were just too "cutesy" for me. The MP3500 looked "mean" and that's what I liked about it. I gave it to my husband as a wedding gift so I got to pick it out..:evil...and ride it home. :wink: If he let me put one of my "Grandma" Windscreens on it, I'd have stole it from him by now.
  11. HeadShrinker

    HeadShrinker Long timer Supporter

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    I was asking myself why I bought such a thing as I was driving it home. But this three wheeled riding machine is growing on me. I have had more than 25 bikes but this is the first scoot.

    My wife loves it and I bought it so she and I could do some riding together.
    The kids like it, too.[​IMG][/IMG]

    Riding home...
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  12. Oilhed

    Oilhed MarkF Supporter

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    Man, if I was buying today it would be a MP3 or BV500. And there you have both side by side.
  13. Catskill

    Catskill tree hugger

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    I have a few old and new scooters and as far as scooters go the BV500 and the MP3 500 are worth every penny I spent on them. Not a single problem with either scooter. All the power you could need for hills and what not. They are the only machines I'd take on a long road trip with out blinking an eye and not having to worry about maintenance.
  14. RedRocket

    RedRocket Yeah! I want Cheesy Poofs

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    Has anyone put an aftermarket pipe on a 500 yet?

    I'd like to hear it.
  15. rhinoWERX

    rhinoWERX Crikey mate!

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    Plenty of people, although I sense it's more about the weight savings than anything else. The LV seems a popular choice...

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  16. Moto Mark

    Moto Mark Been here awhile

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    +1 on the Leo Vince. 15K on my 500 and gets smoother with every mile. That and a J Costa variator is all you need to add, you'll be amazed at the results!
  17. nikhuzlan

    nikhuzlan Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2010
    Oddometer:
    120
    My Fuoco. I wish they'd stick the GP800 onto the twin front wheels. That would be awesome.
    With just 500cc the Fuoco is gutlesss, and with the twin discs hidden inside the front rims the brakes fade with hard continous use. And the CVT gearbox housing scrapes the ground easily on a left turn.

    I regularly play with sportsbikes in the twisties outside Kuala Lumpur but after the brakes faded on me a few times I stopped doing so before I get hurt.

    I did bring it to the racetrack but it scraped on the left and i hit the steering bank limit on right turns.

    But its fun nevertheless.

    Racetrack
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    In the hills......
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  18. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze I keep blowing down the road Supporter

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  19. Wi1dB1ue

    Wi1dB1ue n00b

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    Location:
    Bloomington IN
    I also mounted the LV on our pair of 500s. The wife reports that it's much louder on the road (she can really hear it when I'm heading uphill) than the sewing machine style thump from the stock exhaust, and the reduction in unsprung weight does have a small but noticeable impact on handling. Head over to the Modernvespa site and you'll find lots of info on aftermarket exhaust options, but the LV 4Road does seem to be the more popular choice, even if it's not the loudest/rowdiest of the aftermarket bunch.
  20. trirol1

    trirol1 Adventurer

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    Plano, Texas
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    an Akrapovic is what I replaced my stock exhaust with --- much lighter - throatier sound - i haven't tried it with the db killers off yet