Kick starting an LX or ET
The general consensus among the scooter community is that kick-starting these scooters is not recommended: While the lever and the kick-starting mechanism are robust enough to do the job, the transmission case is not, and there have been reports of the case cracking or breaking when the kick-starter has been applied.

Kick starting an ET or LX engine is explained in the Owners' Manual as follows with annotations:

Please read the notes below before kick-starting your scooter.

From the manual:

If using the kick-starter is necessary please read the following instructions to avoid injuries:
*Use the kick-starter only with sturdy footwear (i.e. low heel, rubber sole).
*Place the vehicle on the center stand.
*Move to the left side of the vehicle.
*Move the engine stop switch (kill switch) to the ON position.
*Make sure the dimmer switch is in the low beam position.
*Rotate the ignition key to the ON position.

To avoid losing control of your vehicle while you start it:
*Firmly hold the rear rackpack (rear rack) with your right hand.
*Place your right foot on the kick-starter and push down slowly until you fell the the kick-starter is properly engaged. (using your instep, not the heel or toe .) The kick-starter is properly engaged when the lever is in the highest position and offers the strongest resistance.
*When the kick-starter is properly engaged, push the level down swiftly to start the vehicle.
*If necessary, repeat the operation until the engine starts.

The manual recommends using the kick-start for one reason:
If the Battery is flat (except vehicles provided with the immobilizer system) or starter motor is faulty.

The kick-starter may not work on a scooter with an immobilizer if the battery is totally flat.


The 50cc Engines are easier to kick-start that the 150cc engines.
Don't expect to get instant results on either.

Don't try the kick-start while the engine is running.

Don't think of the starting procedure as a kick, rather, it's a sturdy quick push down on the lever.

If the lever does not return to the up position, the kick-starter is damaged and must be repaired before use.

Try not to flood the engine with too much gas while attempting to kick-start the scooter. If you think you did, wait a while and try again.

Remember to turn the key off while you are waiting. Otherwise the headlamp (USA) is still on and draining the battery.

There is an old motorcycle rider trick for kick-starting an engine that calls for the throttle to be opened wide as the lever is applied.

The ET and LX scooters are the last modern Vespas to have kick-start levers. It has been reported that their incorporation on these models was intended mainly for nostalgic reasons rather than for regular use. The electric starting mechanism on modern scooters is now deemed reliable enough that a kick-start is no longer necessary.

Some riders remove either the lever or the entire mechanism from their scooters. Other still prefer to keep them on and functioning as a back-up in case the electric starting system fails. Note also that a working kick-start can save some time and trouble when performing a valve lash adjustment. See
Last Updated Wed, 23 Jun 2010 14:56:40 +0000

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