It's always nice to meet friends and that was when Scooter Center-Team on the EICMA 2022 the case. Here is some news that caught our attention:
New Vespa models
Piaggio proudly presented the new 2023 model years, which will win many new fans with some new, visible and invisible features.
The most prominent model is of course the GTS300.
We can already say in advance: It drives better than ever! Piaggio has finally dedicated itself to the subject of chassis and has now made it much more stable and active. This is accompanied by a new front wheel suspension including a new supplier for the brake components. Nissin from Japan is now on board here and is responsible for a befitting delay. The front shock absorber of the GTS models differs again from the previous models, which brings us to the third stage of evolution. Interestingly, Piaggio has retained the previous fork/brake type for the new GTV models (recognizable by the headlight on the fender). In line with the spirit of the times, a keyless go system has now been rolled out on the GTS/GTV platforms. With that, the conventional key is history. It was replaced by a pure transponder (key fob) that can be used to start and unlock the vehicle when approaching via a rotary knob in the position of the former mechanical steering lock. The engine corresponds to the Euro5 engine which is already known from the previous model years. The models generally known as HPE, which brought a decent increase in performance compared to the Euro4 models, are used unchanged, i.e. with full power (23,8 hp at 8.250 rpm), in the 2023 models.
Externally, the new GTS models can only be distinguished from last year's models with a trained eye. However, Piaggio has hardly left a part untouched, so that the term facelift at this point would not do justice to Piaggio's effort. The clear identification feature of the GTS300 Bj.2023 are the switch units separated from the handlebars and the slightly exposed license plate light. The well-known division into GTS, GTS Super, GTS SuperSport and GTS SuperTech has been retained. While the first three versions are more to be understood as color variants, the SuperTech models also stand out technically with a large TFT display instead of the classic instrument landscape. In order not to lose touch in times of mandatory constant communication, Piaggio offers its new connectivity system MIA as an option. A concession to activate new target groups and to give the vehicle class further features, away from the purpose of a pure means of transport. Certainly a good idea to be able to place the GTS models even more fully and comprehensively on the market.
Vespa 946 10° Anniversary
The famous 946 models were also presented in a new guise. Always designed less as a technology and more as an image bearer, the 946 is both extroverted and a homage to the company's own history. The fact that with the 946 models Piaggio has strayed very far from the original idea of the simple but robust everyday vehicle is not at all an issue here. On the contrary, the 946 embodies that archetype scooter that any child would paint. This is more than any marketing department of other manufacturers even dares to dream of. Appropriately, Piaggio has dipped the 946 in a beautiful shade of green that is distantly related to the first paintwork of the models from over 70 years ago. In contrast to the GTS models, the 946 models therefore appeal more to artistic finesse, to whom an individual vehicle concept means more than explicitly good driving performance. For this reason, Piaggio has not yet given the 946 models a keyless go, but still relies on the good old key technology. To compensate, it has a modern LCD display and an LED headlight. The 946 models are offered with 125cc and 150cc.
The new GTV models have undergone major visual changes than their GTS brothers. The handlebar fairing as well as the handlebar itself have been completely redesigned. Together with the sports seat including the new cover made of plastic (screwed/removable) and the decorative stripes, a beautiful nostalgic race look is offered, almost retro sport from the factory. With the front wheel fork, Piaggio stayed with the previously produced type so that the retrofit parts (shock absorbers) already available for these models also fit. However, keyless go is also already on board here and makes the GTV a reliable and easy-to-use commuter with a touch of avant-garde. The USB connection, LED headlights and the digital speedometer round off the picture of the modern oldie perfectly.
New SpecialModel: Primavera Color Vibe
The color vibe special models of the Primavera models impress with a modern appearance that Piaggio has created with a simple but very effective trick. A completely different vehicle line is implied by a horizontally applied decorative color tone, which deliberately contrasts strongly with the rest of the vehicle paintwork. This makes the Primavera models appear much sportier and more pleasing. Attached to the side, the engine displacement is also a nice gimmick. The color vibe models are available in 50cc, 125cc and 150cc versions.
Pinasco is still busy and always inspires with new products. The latest hit is the 244/252cc cylinder which was designed for a standard engine housing. Undoubtedly, the already legendary Quattrini M244 was the inspiration here, with its huge success in 2015 no one expected would have; Too expensive, too exclusive. Pinasco has now also dared to interpret the topic of maximum cubic capacity for the series housing. Here, too, a cylinder is used that no longer has a cylinder base that has to dip into the motor housing. This allows the size of the cylinder bore to be increased to a whopping 72mm (series 66.5mm) without having to rework the engine housing. However, a crankshaft with a significantly longer connecting rod (130mm vs. 110mm series) is absolutely necessary for this, as the channels are located significantly further up in the cylinder. A big difference to the Quattrini M244 cylinder is the intake control. The Pinasco cylinder has a large cylinder inlet which is fired by an intake manifold with a membrane. This makes you completely independent of an intake control via the engine housing. Pinasco will offer matching crankshafts with 60 and 62mm stroke. The connecting rod length is 130mm. According to Pinasco, if a Pinasco engine housing is used, there is no need to spin the crankcase for the crankshafts. This step would only be necessary for original Piaggio motor housings.
A special feature at the Pinasco stand was the E-conversion kit for the Vespa, dubbed Eureka Smallframemodels.
The solution patented by Pinasco envisages replacing only the crankshaft and the cylinder. The cylinder is replaced by an electric motor with a vertical output shaft. The replacement for the crankshaft, on the other hand, absorbs the power of the engine via spur gearing and transmits it conventionally to the clutch. The scooter can be operated as usual (coupling, shifting, accelerating, uhh, giving electricity).
New exhaust Vespa Sprint
Polini now also offers their popular 'original box' exhaust system for older engine generations such as the Vespa Sprint. With these models, the exhaust is only fixed to a screw on the engine block. Polini has therefore modified and strengthened the bracket. The end tube was also lengthened. This appears to be smaller than in conventional systems. As soon as we have the new systems in the program, we will mention this detail in the shop. It is also unclear whether the main stand of the Sprint models can fold in unhindered. An often voiced point of criticism of the previous Polini systems which were used on the Sprint/Rally models. Apparently Polini only offers the modified exhaust for the small engine blocks (125-150cc).
Lambretta celebrates its 75th anniversary at EICMA 2022. It is presented with a modern range in different shifts and trendy colors.
Sport Scooter Dragster 500 GP
Italjet has presented its new GP500 model to the public for the first time and shows that motorcycles and scooters are getting closer and closer. A full 450ccm with 43 hp and a six-speed foot switch were paired with a squat and very attractive-looking raw frame including scooter-typical fairing and, for the range of services, rather small tires. According to Italjet, the GP500 should be fast at a whopping 185km/h. For us a real cracker that could certainly take on the legacy of the Gilera Runner 180.