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@newtoscoot avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
 
Enthusiast
@newtoscoot avatar
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
UTC quote
Hello!

New to the forums, but I've been reading for a week nonstop. For as long as I can remember I've wanted a Vespa, but never had a commute where it made sense (50 highway miles each way!). Now, I'm local to my job and my SUV is taking up more gas than I like. I think now is the perfect time to look into owning a Vespa, it would likely get plenty of use from April-November and ease the burden of my gas consumption!

Last week I decided I'd go for it , and have since signed up for a motorcycle training class and have spent the last week scouring the forums and CL to get an idea of what exactly to look for, since I really had no idea.

I think I'd like a GTS, so that I have the option to take it on the highway if I ever needed to, but, it would be some time before I would be brave enough to do that, so I am still considering a 150 (still don't know the model lettering, but I know for sure a 150). I'm also petite, which may factor into it. Also, I think I'd be more comfortable closer to the $2k range rather than $3k, GTS puts me above that.

That's my first apprehension. Second is maintenance...I'm 60 highway miles from either of 2 Vespa dealerships and my basic search for scooter shops yielded no results. I've gathered from the forums that many things can be DIY, but with NO experience changing oil or anything mechanical, I am very apprehensive to attempt something like that, so I'm really concerned there are no local places to take it for routine maintenance.

There are several Yamaha/Honda dealers nearby-would they be capable or Vespa a really niche scooter (similar to the difficulty in finding a saab mechanic)?

Any tips or words of encouragement for a first timer would be greatly appreciated! I'm trying to soak up as much as I can, and have some time since I'm not sure when my class starts, but I overall feel like I'm flying pretty blind!
@lc353 avatar
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nope
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Location: I'm going there, but I like it here, wherever this is.
 
Addicted
@lc353 avatar
nope
Joined: UTC
Posts: 817
Location: I'm going there, but I like it here, wherever this is.
UTC quote
2 cents from a fellow newbie...

It's a very good thing that you're thinking ahead to maintenance costs...hopefully you won't have much!

Since I'm pretty much a 'first-timer' still, I can tell you that my mpg isn't as fantastic as I'd been hoping for. I'm 6' & 195lbs so I'm catching alot of wind (no windshield) & I'm putting decent weight on the engine. That said, I'm on a 50cc & there's a bunch of stop signs between home & work so both of those things factor against me. If you're around Nashua/Merrimack/Concord you'll likely have plenty of stops also but if you're scooting around Sunapee or the Kancamagus it'll be smooth sailing. Your aim for a larger engine will probably serve you well. Don't forget to get your helmet & scooter locking device. Hope this helps a bit.
@writernick avatar
UTC

Hooked
GTS 125 Super ie
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Posts: 147
Location: South Yorkshire, England
 
Hooked
@writernick avatar
GTS 125 Super ie
Joined: UTC
Posts: 147
Location: South Yorkshire, England
UTC quote
Hello and welcome to MV!
As a GTS owner I say go for it (as you'd expect)
As a Brit, I don't know about the situation in New Hampshire, but over here I'd expect any motorcycle repair shop to be able and happy to carry out repairs/servicing on a Vespa.
As for the motorcyle training course, good on you for signing up. You'll learn a lot. But they really are very easy to ride and control. And hugely stylish and fun as well of course
@yayadave avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
MP3 500 - GTV250
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Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
 
Ossessionato
@yayadave avatar
MP3 500 - GTV250
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
UTC quote
Re: Hoping to get a Vespa, a bit apprehensive
NewToScoot wrote:
Hello!

New to the forums, but I've been reading for a week nonstop. For as long as I can remember I've wanted a Vespa, but never had a commute where it made sense (50 highway miles each way!). Now, I'm local to my job and my SUV is taking up more gas than I like. I think now is the perfect time to look into owning a Vespa, it would likely get plenty of use from April-November and ease the burden of my gas consumption!

Last week I decided I'd go for it , and have since signed up for a motorcycle training class and have spent the last week scouring the forums and CL to get an idea of what exactly to look for, since I really had no idea.

I think I'd like a GTS, so that I have the option to take it on the highway if I ever needed to, but, it would be some time before I would be brave enough to do that, so I am still considering a 150 (still don't know the model lettering, but I know for sure a 150). I'm also petite, which may factor into it. Also, I think I'd be more comfortable closer to the $2k range rather than $3k, GTS puts me above that.

That's my first apprehension. Second is maintenance...I'm 60 highway miles from either of 2 Vespa dealerships and my basic search for scooter shops yielded no results. I've gathered from the forums that many things can be DIY, but with NO experience changing oil or anything mechanical, I am very apprehensive to attempt something like that, so I'm really concerned there are no local places to take it for routine maintenance.

There are several Yamaha/Honda dealers nearby-would they be capable or Vespa a really niche scooter (similar to the difficulty in finding a saab mechanic)?

Any tips or words of encouragement for a first timer would be greatly appreciated! I'm trying to soak up as much as I can, and have some time since I'm not sure when my class starts, but I overall feel like I'm flying pretty blind!
You're not flying blind!! You're going in exactly the right direction!!! First is starting with a Motorcycle Safety Class. Wise move. Then, you found Modern Vespa!! Absolutely the right move!! Asking about where to get service is good, forward thinking. An easy way to get some answers in your situation is to just go around to the dealers in your area who have good reputations and ask. The ones who handle scooters should be able to do the work. Of course, they'll also try to sell you their scoots, too. Wha? emoticon Also think if there's anybody in you locality who has a Vespa and talk to them about where they get service, if you can. Parts would probably be an on-line operation.

The mostest help to get going is right here on Modern Vespa. And I don't get paid for saying that. Clown emoticon

Good luck to ya', and WELCOME.
@yayadave avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
MP3 500 - GTV250
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Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
 
Ossessionato
@yayadave avatar
MP3 500 - GTV250
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Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
UTC quote
A HINT AND A BIT
A hint:
If you want to make friends with any of your local dealers who you might want to work on your scoot, shop their places when you're picking up your riding gear.

A bit ... of info:
I bot a used GTV250 last year. Honestly, I probably weigh as much as it does, and I am getting 67 MPG riding in town, city and on the interstate.
@paperino avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
GTS 250 "Audrey"
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Location: New Harbor, Maine
 
Ossessionato
@paperino avatar
GTS 250 "Audrey"
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Posts: 2117
Location: New Harbor, Maine
UTC quote
External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Glad you're doing the course. It should be a lot of fun. You're off to a good start.

I was thinking the GTS would be best because you'd have no limits and it would be good with the hills of NH, but then you said "petite."

With that in mind, the size of a 150 would likely fit you much better. You can still take it where you want, but I'd be a little leery of the Interstates and even Rt. 3 (high speeds, big hills, crazy cars). As your comfort level increases, you might surprise yourself where you'll ride.

I used to find it hard to imagine being in all kinds of traffic when I was sitting in a car, but once on the scoot, it all seems kind of natural.

I think most motorcycle shops could take care of the basics for you. If they'd agree to it, you could always supply them with the Vespa specific parts if needed, and have them do the wrenching. Unless the scoot is not drivable, you might enjoy the ride to the shop. Let them know you're coming, and they might get you in and out quickly given the distance you have to go. A dealer 100 miles away did that for me when I was in Florida. Is Great Bay in Hampton one of the dealers?

Good luck with everything, and have fun.
@tazio avatar
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Addicted
2007 Vespa GTS250ie 2007 Buddy 125 Series Italia 2012 Ural Gear-Up
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Location: Woodland Hills, CA
 
Addicted
@tazio avatar
2007 Vespa GTS250ie 2007 Buddy 125 Series Italia 2012 Ural Gear-Up
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Posts: 600
Location: Woodland Hills, CA
UTC quote
Ditto above, it's best to start with a smaller scoot if you're a newby. You can always go bigger later. Start out easy and always ride your own ride. If you are not at ease back off and work on expanding your skills.
@tball avatar
UTC

Hooked
300GTS, 06 Honda Big Ruckus, 06/08 Morphesty and a 13 650 Burgman
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Location: SoCal
 
Hooked
@tball avatar
300GTS, 06 Honda Big Ruckus, 06/08 Morphesty and a 13 650 Burgman
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Posts: 179
Location: SoCal
UTC quote
I go on weekly rides with many groups. One couple have a 250gtv and she a 150LX. She told me she would like the additional power of the 250 but not the weight. She too is a petite woman. They are looking into fitting the 190cc kit on her scooter with pipe and dr pulley sliders to make her fly. So do try the 150 as you are petite and later it can be made better for about 1500.00 I think.
And most definitely follow Tazios advice, ride your own ride. Never let others push you to go faster, go into twisties before you are ready and have fun riding your ride.
@dooglas avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
Joined: UTC
Posts: 13377
Location: Oregon City, OR
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@dooglas avatar
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
Joined: UTC
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Location: Oregon City, OR
UTC quote
NewToScoot wrote:
I think I'd like a GTS, so that I have the option to take it on the highway if I ever needed to, but, it would be some time before I would be brave enough to do that, so I am still considering a 150 (still don't know the model lettering, but I know for sure a 150). I'm also petite, which may factor into it.
How petite are you? I ask as even the LX/S 150 Vespas have a fairly high seat height which can be a struggle for smaller riders. My partner is 5'3" and has never been comfortable on our LX150. Early on in your considerations, you should sit on some different models and see how close you can come to putting both feet firmly on the ground. I appreciate that everyone's comfort level is different and custom seats are also possible, but this is a factor for you to consider.
@beverley avatar
UTC

Hooked
Vespa 250 GTSie
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Posts: 140
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
 
Hooked
@beverley avatar
Vespa 250 GTSie
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Posts: 140
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
UTC quote
Hi there - good for you to get something a little more fun that guzzles less gas. I bought a used GTS last summer and have been quite obsessed with it. You will probably love it once you do it. That being said, I am a 5'5" woman and the weight of the bike at 330+lbs. (particularly during occasions when I am perpendicular to a hill slope and trying to back into a parking spot) can be a bit much. I am getting used to it and have to be careful that I stop in flat areas with good footing. The motorcycle course I took in Toronto was excellent, but since it was manual clutch, extra challenging compared to the twist-and-go. I paid for a couple of extra hours one-on-one and the extra practice and explanations made it easy to pass my M1 exit. So, to sum up, persevere if the M/C safety course is difficult and maybe take out both a 150 and a 250 for a test ride (or at least get them to let you manoeuvre both off and on their stands). Good Luck & Enjoy!!
@beverley avatar
UTC

Hooked
Vespa 250 GTSie
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
 
Hooked
@beverley avatar
Vespa 250 GTSie
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
UTC quote
^^ sorry, probably should have mentioned I am talking about a 250, not a 150. Since you are looking at 150s, see if you can take one around the dealers' parking lot once you've done your course.
@ikevin avatar
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GTS 300 Super Sport SE
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Location: Florence, Alabama
 
Hooked
@ikevin avatar
GTS 300 Super Sport SE
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Location: Florence, Alabama
UTC quote
I love my GTS and have also owned countless scoots from several manufacturers. A GTS has considerable torque and I would recommend starting on a smaller scoot if you've never ridden before. The reason I say this is that odds are you're going to make newbie mistakes that on a smaller and slower bike are easier to correct without a crash. I started with a 50cc and I'm glad I did. Granted, I am an idiot. You may not make the mistakes I did... so take that into consideration.

Also it wouldn't be unfair if I didn't mention that I have a bias for Vespas. Always have simply because the brand is so iconic. That said, I have yet to see a Vespa that is as reliable and has a better dealer network availability than Yamaha scooters. Yamaha bikes are the most reliable I've owned, and I've owned many.

GTS is still my favorite though
@kdude avatar
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BV 400 (21) , BV 350 (16) SOLD :( , Sprint 150 2015(SOLD), Liberty S150 2018
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@kdude avatar
BV 400 (21) , BV 350 (16) SOLD :( , Sprint 150 2015(SOLD), Liberty S150 2018
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Location: Florida
UTC quote
I may get flamed for this but If it were me i'd go honda or yamaha.

Check out the honda sh150 or the pcx 150. Both excellent and great commuters.

I love vespa's but you have too be realistic about the distance to have service and warranty work done. Just my .02$

H
@dooglas avatar
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Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
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Location: Oregon City, OR
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@dooglas avatar
GTS 300ABS, Buddy 125, Buddy Kick 125
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Location: Oregon City, OR
UTC quote
kdude wrote:
I may get flamed for this but If it were me i'd go honda or yamaha.
Fine to be realistic about service needs, but it ain't as simple as saying that there are more Yamaha and Honda dealers. I have owned both a Honda and a Yamaha scooter. Sure there were nearby dealers. They stocked no accessories or parts for scooters. Their mechanics knew very little about scooters. Now, I am sure that there are dealers that do a better job supporting scooters, but I never met a Honda or Yamaha dealer who was not focused 99% on motorcycles. The local Piaggio/Vespa dealer and the local Aprilia dealer both do a better job on scooter repair, scooter parts, and scooter accessories. I guess the moral of the tale is to be sure you know your local dealers and their abilities.
@camaraderie avatar
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Member
Lx150 i.e.
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Location: East Coastal
 
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@camaraderie avatar
Lx150 i.e.
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Location: East Coastal
UTC quote
Well...I'm 4 weeks more experienced than you are at this point so maybe that perspective can help you a bit. I can relate to your questions and fears about riding and it is an excellent idea to complete a course. I'm riding a Vespa LX150 and am about twice your size and weight...nah...but prolly have a foot or more and at least 100 lbs on you. I'm amazed at how easy it is to learn to ride and operate these things. I've had mine cruising at 55mph which was something I never thought I'd consider a few weeks ago...and I feel comfortable at that speed. With your size...you could probably hit 60+ no problem. The 150 weighs about #250 and is easy to get up on the stand for both me and the wife. That said...I NOW wouldn't mind being able to go 65-70 but I need to also consider weight on my trailer hitch for 2 scoots so that isn't an option at the moment.
As to service...one thing nice about Vespas I think is their reliability...and normal maintenance like oil changes and tire changes etc. can be handled by any shop. MY Vespa dealer is 3 hours away by car...but I still plan to go to them for warranty service and anything major. I note that UHaul (and probably others) rent both short enclosed trailers and cycle trailers rather cheaply, so my plan is to use the car and hitch up to one of those for major service needs.
Hope this helps a bit! Good luck!!
@sfchorus avatar
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Genuine Buddy 125 (sold), LX 150ie, Primavera
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Location: San Francisco, CA
 
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@sfchorus avatar
Genuine Buddy 125 (sold), LX 150ie, Primavera
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Location: San Francisco, CA
UTC quote
Your story is really similar to mine. I wanted a Vespa for a long time, then something changed with my work commute to make a scooter the ideal form of transportation for me. I took the plunge and I can't tell you how happy scootering makes me (it's ridiculously fun!).

Like you, I'm also really petite at 5'1". To be honest, I couldn't have handled an LX150 as an absolute newbee. I had to take the MSF class first, then really learn to ride daily on a smaller scooter. I graduated to my dream Vespa last month, after 8 months on my smaller scooter. I hate to admit this but I also wear "cheater heels" (aka platform boots). They really help me at stops and when parking. I hope to be able to quit wearing the cheaters in a couple of months when my stops are better controlled and polished.

You sound like you're doing all the right things. Good luck on your journey and please feel free to PM me if you want to talk about strategies for petite riders
@cosmos avatar
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Addicted
2009 LX 150, 2008 GTS 250
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Posts: 905
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
 
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@cosmos avatar
2009 LX 150, 2008 GTS 250
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Posts: 905
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
UTC quote
Newtoscoot,

I have some similar experience. I have the LX150 and the GTS250.

I do an 11 mile one way trek to work most days of the year and joyride on the weekends putting nearly 18,000 miles on the LX in 3 years. Much of my riding is 50 to 55 mph on highways and I have some steep hills here in the southern Appalachians. I save the GTS for weekend rides and count on the LX during the week. The LX 150 would be my recommendation since it can keep up with non- interstate traffic nicely. Add a mid size flyscreen and you have more comfort.

The GTS is great. But it has more maintenance and some is difficult /expensive compared to the LX. My dealer is 60 miles away so I do almost all my maintenance with the help of MV and Scooterwest videos on youtube. Work into the maintenance slowly, join a club or find some folks that you trust to teach you some basics. Buy a small bumper rack to carry your scooter on your SUV if you need to carry it in for maintenance.

Bill
@victor1 avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
2011 LX150ie two tone expresso
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Posts: 1118
Location: Michigan - U.P.
 
Molto Verboso
@victor1 avatar
2011 LX150ie two tone expresso
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1118
Location: Michigan - U.P.
UTC quote
Lots of good advice. My dealer is about 100 miles away, so have opted to do my own service. If you can change the oil on a lawn mower, you'll find that DIY service on your Vespa isn't that difficult. Maybe just a little more awkward. Sometimes I would like a little more power but 99% of the time, my LX150 is more then I need. Honda and Yamaha are both good reliable scoots but if you have your heart set on a Vespa, go for it. If you don't, you'll probably always wish you did. None the less, good luck on your soon to be purchase. Enjoy and be safe. Glad for you.
@fledermaus avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
2007 LX150 2015 GTS (on the bench) 2017 BV 350
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Location: Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@fledermaus avatar
2007 LX150 2015 GTS (on the bench) 2017 BV 350
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Posts: 12031
Location: Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
UTC quote
I'd second the comments on concern over matching experience, body size and scooter size. You will definitely want to sit on something before getting too far down the decision path.

I'm curious how far your commute is...at first read, I thought it was the 50 mile number..... much less? And the route? The roads you'll be using can help tip the balance.

I'm around 60 miles from a dealer in any direction. I suspect a non-Vespa shop is a bit of a coin toss for maintenance work. I had some electrical problems last year, and the local shop wouldn't touch it. OTOH, they just mounted a new tire for me..... It's very likely at some point you'll run into a situation that only a dealer can help with....hard to say when, if ever. Having a friend with a truck or a trailer is nice to fall back on in a pinch. Talking to the local shops would be a good start.
OP
@newtoscoot avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
 
Enthusiast
@newtoscoot avatar
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
UTC quote
Thanks to all replies for the positive feedback. This forum is a little different than I'm used to, so apologies if I don't reply to everyone directly.

Yes I mentioned petite - I'm 5'/115 lbs - because I do think the 250 might be too big to start with, but I'm apprehensive to buy something now, and quickly want more power and have to buy something new next year, but weight could certainly be an issue, so I am strongly considering it.

I am going to California next month and am hoping to rent a scooter or two out there! I also intended to test drive at a dealer if possible but I am certainly looking to by used.

Southern NH is the area I am from-and riding through Hollis, Nashua, Merrimack, Milford would be standard routes-so I want enough power to get me through the hills and 101 to Keene.

To clarify, I used to have a 50 mile commute one way, but now it's about 6 miles. I get on the highway for one exit but would take side roads on the Vespa until I felt comfortable-this would likely add a few minutes to my ride.

My brother has tried pushing a Honda on me too, but Vespa is what I want

I plan to spend the next week or two checking out the local shops, especially for merch since I will need a few items for the class (boots, jacket, gloves, jacket). I plan to buy the helmet once I pass (the class provides them).

Cosmos - thanks for the tips. I don't know a single other person who rides, and just one with a motorcycle. A club could be a good idea.

Paperino- yes great bay and herb chambers down in Boston.
@vespinado avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
'12 GTS 300 Super
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Posts: 1248
Location: Austin TX
 
Molto Verboso
@vespinado avatar
'12 GTS 300 Super
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Posts: 1248
Location: Austin TX
UTC quote
I've been reading this thread with interest. It wasn't long ago I had to make the same decision. I went with a 125cc for two years. Later, and only when I was ready, moved to the 300. My commute is only a bit over four miles. The fastest route has me on the freeway for two exits.

A 150 will handle 95% of any of your scooter needs. What it lacks in highway performance will easily be made up for by maneuverability and ease of parking.

Get the one you feel most comfortable with...
UTC

Hooked
2011 LX 150ie 2013 LX 50 4v
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Posts: 130
Location: Darien, Ct
 
Hooked
2011 LX 150ie 2013 LX 50 4v
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Posts: 130
Location: Darien, Ct
UTC quote
I recommend that you spend a few minutes pushing some different size Vespas around and taking them on and off the center stand. Maneuvering the scooters while not on them is, in some ways, the threshold difference between the 150's and the 250/300's. A Vespa dealer is obviously the best place to do this. The 150's are much lighter and easier to handle when you're not aboard, as well as quicker coupled while riding at lower speeds. The 250/300 models are vastly superior for interstate use and generally feel better above 45-50 mph. If I were new to riding a scooter, I would start with a 150, as a less intimidating ride and accept the risk that I might need to upgrade after a couple of years.
@jdnepa avatar
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Hooked
GTS300SS
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Location: Mountain Top, PA
 
Hooked
@jdnepa avatar
GTS300SS
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Location: Mountain Top, PA
UTC quote
I say do the motorcycle safety course first. Usually they are 2 days and includes riding. If you ride and get comfortable on the 250cc bikes for the course, the GTS 300 or 250 will be more of a "known" factor. You can then sit on them and ensure you're comfortable with seat height. If so, I suspect you will have less ambiguity and concern.

I'd vote a 300 but that's just me as it has room to grow. That said, you should at least be comfortable on 2 wheels and have the foundation work down. MSF is key for anyone new....big fan.
@bill_of_ojai avatar
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Hooked
GTS300 Super
Joined: UTC
Posts: 217
Location: Ojai, CA
 
Hooked
@bill_of_ojai avatar
GTS300 Super
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Location: Ojai, CA
UTC quote
Hi New! Welcome to the club.

Lots of good advice here already. I'd like to add that seats can be pretty easily reduced in height by an inch or so by auto upholstery shops or any of the motorcycle/scooter seat specialists like Pirate upholstery.

My wife is 5'3" and rides a Vespa ET-4 150 like a demon.

Best to you!
UTC

Hooked
Vespa LX 150 (F-. Ball of Sunshine), Buddy 170i
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Posts: 110
Location: Indiana
 
Hooked
Vespa LX 150 (F-. Ball of Sunshine), Buddy 170i
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Posts: 110
Location: Indiana
UTC quote
SFChorus wrote:
I hate to admit this but I also wear "cheater heels" (aka platform boots). They really help me at stops and when parking. I hope to be able to quit wearing the cheaters in a couple of months when my stops are better controlled and polished.
I'm 5'4" and I got platforms too. When my hand pain permits, I'm going around our neighborhood in my regular boots to get used to them. Hopefully soon I can wear whatever boots I choose when I ride =)
@aviator47 avatar
UTC

Moderator
2006 PX 150 & Malossi Kitted Malaguti Yesterday (Wife's)
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Location: Paros Island, Greece
 
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@aviator47 avatar
2006 PX 150 & Malossi Kitted Malaguti Yesterday (Wife's)
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Location: Paros Island, Greece
UTC quote
External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text to MV from the Sunny Aegean!

Your perspective will be different after the MSF Basic Rider Course, as you will experienced riding. From there, try out some different models, if you can. You can't determine feel and fit from someone else's comments.

Good luck.
OP
@newtoscoot avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
 
Enthusiast
@newtoscoot avatar
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
UTC quote
Thanks for all the positive comments!!!

I mailed my registration on Saturday, it's first come first serve basis so hopefully I found out this week which class I'll be enrolled in, I'm hoping it will be June!

I agree with many that I will have to test drive to see what's comfortable, and am thinking that if it's the 150,, even if for one season, it's better than to start too big. I can't wait!

One other thing I wanted to ask-what's a general idea of a cost for a custom paint job? I've found that from my time searching dealerships and craigslist, the models I've looked at are mostly white, black, or red. I saw a turquoise one that I just loved though. If the time comes to buy, I don't want to pass up on a good value just because the color isn't what I was looking for. Thanks!!
UTC

Ossessionato
Piaggio BV250
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2429
Location: Historic Route 66 in Oklahoma
 
Ossessionato
Piaggio BV250
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Posts: 2429
Location: Historic Route 66 in Oklahoma
UTC quote
NewToScoot, be aware that most dealers will not allow anyone to take a test ride, unless they possess a "M" endorsement on their driver license.
Good luck with your search: you're gonna have a blast scootering around!
@toot avatar
UTC

Hooked
ET4 SOLD/74 Primavera 125 SOLD/ 2005 GT 200 SOLD 2013 PCX 150 2005 ET2 Sold 2013 Genuine Blur, 2013 Genuine Stella 2011 Vespa GTS 300
Joined: UTC
Posts: 121
Location: Moorpark , Ca.
 
Hooked
@toot avatar
ET4 SOLD/74 Primavera 125 SOLD/ 2005 GT 200 SOLD 2013 PCX 150 2005 ET2 Sold 2013 Genuine Blur, 2013 Genuine Stella 2011 Vespa GTS 300
Joined: UTC
Posts: 121
Location: Moorpark , Ca.
UTC quote
Check out Honda PCX. Not a Vespa and not meant to be. But it is such a sweet ride
@paperino avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
GTS 250 "Audrey"
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2117
Location: New Harbor, Maine
 
Ossessionato
@paperino avatar
GTS 250 "Audrey"
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2117
Location: New Harbor, Maine
UTC quote
Of the two dealers, I'd would choose Great Bay. I think you'll get better personal attention, and they love motorcycles. It's a good place to forge a relationship. The other is just a bit part of an "auto empire." Besides, driving down to Comm Ave can be a pain. Riding along the Rye coast and Newcastle is lovely, and getting a bite in Portsmouth makes a good day.
@judy avatar
UTC

World Traveler
2007 LX150 Daring Plum Leonardo Da Vespa
Joined: UTC
Posts: 29304
 
World Traveler
@judy avatar
2007 LX150 Daring Plum Leonardo Da Vespa
Joined: UTC
Posts: 29304
UTC quote
Aloha and we;come to the forum from Hawaii. I'd go for the LX. Much lighter and smaller. Good starting bike IMHO. See if you can pick something up used. If the seat is to high on the LX get a ET4 seat. It's a tad lower and not as wide. Throw a 190 kit on and you'll be flying. Also 2 new models coming out soon the Sprint and the Primavera. Primavera might be at a dealer now. Both appear to be smaller but your going to have to sit on them to see which one is the most comfortable for you. I have over 27,000 miles on my LX and he's still going strong. I avoid freeways and our 2 lane highways are the best way to ride the scooter IMHO. You can also get a boot or show with a higher sole which may help. Good luck
UTC

Addicted
Joined: UTC
Posts: 538
 
Addicted
Joined: UTC
Posts: 538
UTC quote
Re: Hoping to get a Vespa, a bit apprehensive
NewToScoot wrote:
I'd be more comfortable closer to the $2k range rather than $3k
Include Sym and Lance in your research.
@stickyfrog avatar
UTC

Moderatus Rana
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 22659
Location: Nashville, Indiana
 
Moderatus Rana
@stickyfrog avatar
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 22659
Location: Nashville, Indiana
UTC quote
Well you are a tiny thing aren't you? And a homey. A 150 will be fine for most of the hilly roads in southern NH Flatlander. Since you stated you will be going on the interstate (I-93?) you may want to check NH law to see if there is an engine size restriction for interstates.

As Al said though after the MSF course your perspective will change. Who knows, you may want a Harley.
@yayadave avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
MP3 500 - GTV250
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
 
Ossessionato
@yayadave avatar
MP3 500 - GTV250
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2970
Location: Near Pittsburgh
UTC quote
Just for research purposes, you might start looking at Craig's list to see what scoots are around and what prices. Note that Vespa colors change about every year, seems like. And, of course, some of the nicest colors are not made any more!! Laughing emoticon Laughing emoticon
@paddlenround avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
2013 Vespa LX150ie, 1968 Vespa Sprint 150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 4041
Location: Ogden, UT U.S.A.
 
Ossessionato
@paddlenround avatar
2013 Vespa LX150ie, 1968 Vespa Sprint 150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 4041
Location: Ogden, UT U.S.A.
UTC quote
I find my 150 is more than adequate for highway speeds. I catch myself zipping along at 65 without any issue. I just don't like riding on the highway. It feels exposed.

I would definitely get a Vespa as it's resale value is significant.
@cdwise avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
GTS 300, Buddy 125
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8870
Location: Knoxville, TN
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@cdwise avatar
GTS 300, Buddy 125
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8870
Location: Knoxville, TN
UTC quote
Personally, when I was faced with the same decision on what scooter to buy I waited until after the MSF course. Which was the best decision I could have made. First scooter was a Buddy 125 which had more get up and go than the Vespa ET 4 150 we bought next. We still have that Buddy 8 years later and it has been a daily commuter for my son throughout his high school years until he needed freeway capability for university. Buddy is a more Vespa styled scoot than any of the Hondas (except the 50cc Met) and is very capable and reliable. It also is better suited for shorter riders so don't rule it out as an entry level scoot that you can move up to a GTS later from. Lightweight and with the option of an even lower profile seat which puts its seat height almost 3" lower than any of the Vespas it is worth considering. Just something else to think about because at your height the seat height of a Vespa will be a challenge for new rider.
@stickyfrog avatar
UTC

Moderatus Rana
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 22659
Location: Nashville, Indiana
 
Moderatus Rana
@stickyfrog avatar
MP3 250 and 2 MP3 500s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 22659
Location: Nashville, Indiana
UTC quote
Oh I will add, and apologies if someone already said this, seriously consider a used scooter no matter what you decide on for a first bike as the likelihood of an occasional oops will be higher while you are learning.

Good luck homey.
OP
@newtoscoot avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
 
Enthusiast
@newtoscoot avatar
2013 LX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 53
Location: NH
UTC quote
What's a homey?

I will absolutely be buying used, I've been checking CL to get an idea of pricing and market availability. Lots of 50s and GTS, not a ton of 150s.

One that I found seemed reasonably priced is a shade of yellow that I could not live with. Depending what it costs for new paint, I would go for something like that (it's a 2008 with 10k miles, is that considered a lot?).

I will absolutely not be buying or test driving until I have my license, which won't be happening until I pass the course. I wouldn't even have a way to get it home since I have no knowledge on how to drive one.

I just like to be fully knowledgeable and I spend a lot of time researching endlessly until I am comfortable with a decision
@adolph avatar
UTC

Member
2013 GTS 300 Super
Joined: UTC
Posts: 42
Location: Ohio
 
Member
@adolph avatar
2013 GTS 300 Super
Joined: UTC
Posts: 42
Location: Ohio
UTC quote
A recently joined forum member's welcome to the forum
I've been following along with your careful consideration in finding your first scooter. The weight of a vehicle may be less a factor for one packaged in petite form as you indicate of yourself than the height of the seat relative to your inseam for easily reaching the ground while stopped without upsetting. I checked my GTS seat. It would not be a difficult modification to install a seat 4 to 6 inches lower than the original for a shorter person. Although I'm 5'7," I am starting to be cautious about my increasing frailty. Having considered a smaller Vespa before settling on a GTS, I am happy for the extra performance of the GTS, and surprised at how comfortable it is to ride highways.

Many with years of experience have provided excellent information here. You are doing everything right. Every time I am riding, I am glad to have my Vespa. I say this, because of having checked with a local dealer that had great sale prices on other scooters that made purchasing a Vespa from an out-of-town dealer at a significantly higher cost seem extravagant.
@larrytsg avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
1979 P200e
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2665
Location: Lock Haven, PA
 
Ossessionato
@larrytsg avatar
1979 P200e
Joined: UTC
Posts: 2665
Location: Lock Haven, PA
UTC quote
Good luck on the MSF course. Best weekend or two that will pay you back over and over again.

I'm a short guy (TSG is The Short Guy), 5'2", and I started on motorcycles 15 years ago, left the bikes behind for a number of years for family reasons (single Dad raising kids), and now I'm back on scooters. I had Honda Shadows, I've ridden Harleys and Ninjas too.

As for scooters, 2 pieces of advice. Number one is to find a reliable shop locally, just sniff around and look for scooter clubs and whatnot and dig deep and you'll find someone local. I'm west of Boston, and I can imagine there are a number of places in southern NH that wrench on scooters and mopeds.

Number two is to buy a beater bike to really learn on. It's what I did with motorcycles. Get something that is solid, but with a couple of bumps and scrapes on it already. It will give you a chance to do two things.... ride without being terrified of scratching your baby, and time to figure out how to do some simple maintenance. Give yourself a year to putter around on your starter, and then sell it or trade it in for what you really want, as you'll have a better idea what that is after a year.

My scooter is an older P series, and yep, I kinda dropped it once already. It has enough bumps and bruises that I didn't see any damage (though it did leave some white paint on my wife's car.... shhhh!)
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