Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Free to good home: Vespa for 12 months

I thought I had posted this already, but realized that it languished in my draft folder. Well, better late than never!

Piaggio Group Americas Announces Industry-First Risk-Free 12-Month Test Ride

NEW YORK, June 1, 2009 – Piaggio Group Americas, Inc., the importer of Vespa, Piaggio, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi scooters and motorcycles, has an offer that you just can’t refuse. If you’ve been tempted to join America’s rapidly growing scooter community but your plans have been on idle because you’re not sure whether you were born to ride, the time to discover your inner scooteristi is right now. Effective today, Piaggio invites consumers on a risk-free 12 Month Test Ride, an industry-first program that offers qualified buyers the opportunity to experience all the fun, savings and environmental benefits of select Piaggio, Aprilia and Vespa scooters without a long-term commitment. The 12 Month Test Ride offer includes the option to return the scooter to participating dealers after 365 days of ownership if the buyer decides that the two-wheel lifestyle just isn’t right for them after all.

The Piaggio scooters included in the 12 Month Test Ride are the Piaggio FLY 50, Piaggio FLY 150, Piaggio BV Tourer 250 and the Piaggio MP3 250. You can also choose from the Vespa S 50, Vespa LX 150, Vespa GTS 300 Super or the Aprilia Sportcity 50, Aprilia Sportcity 125, Aprilia Scarabeo 100 and Aprilia Scarabeo 200.

"It’s our mission to remove any roadblocks keeping even more Americans from discovering just how much money and time they can save, and how much fun they can have, by adding two wheels to their garage,” said Paolo Timoni, President and CEO, Piaggio Group Americas. “The economic, environmental and lifestyle benefits of scooters are proven on a daily basis in major markets around the globe, and we think this hassle-free introduction to scooter ownership is a risk-free way for U.S. consumers to take a trial membership in our American scooter nation.”

Timoni believes that newcomers to the scooter lifestyle will quickly be convinced to make two wheels a permanent addition to their personal transportation fleets. Existing scooter owners already know that life on two wheels delivers fun and thrills. Practical benefits such as an average 70 mpg fuel economy and an average ownership and operating cost savings of $6,000 per year provide even more incentive to ride. With the majority of American households still owning two, three or more vehicles, swapping just one set of four wheels for two is an immediate solution to rev up personal savings while throttling back on foreign oil dependence, urban congestion
and carbon dioxide emissions.

The 12 Month Test Ride is open to buyers who qualify for a 36-month closed-end finance term, exclusively offered through Piaggio Group America’s partner Sheffield Financial. To take advantage of the offer, the purchase
must be completed by July 31, 2009. The risk-free return guarantee requires the completion of 12 scheduled loan payments and excludes upfront license, vehicle preparation, freight and tax fees as well as a 10% down payment based on the vehicle’s manufacturer’s suggested retail price.

For more details about the 12 Month Test Your Ride, please visit

Blog entry soundtrack: "Careful" by Hot Chip Those limeys rock! :-)

Twitterers @ Amerivespa...

If you are at Amerivespa, don't forget to use the #amerivespa tag!

Follow me @scootmagapril

Amerivespa 2009- Ths Weekend!

I can barely believe that Amerivespa 2009 happens this week. It's in Scoot!'s backyard-- the Silicon Valley. Last weekend the heat was unbearable, but this coming weekend is supposed to be pleasant. Yes!

Scoot! has helped secure donations for the raffle (including several brand new scooters!) and both Josh and I are leading rides. Mike and his crew from SF are throwing the Friday night shindig and Scoot! is hosting a scooter movie show after the Saturday night banquet.

I'll be leading a Shopping Ride with my housemate, Lori. If you are interested in hitting some unique vintage shops and gift boutiques come along! You can see some of the stops here:

View Amerivespa Shopping Ride in a larger map

Josh is leading a ride to Alice's Restaurant, a popular destination for two-wheel riders in this area.

We'll have a booth at both the Friday and Saturday vendor events. If you are here come by to say hello!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Vera Wang: If You Have $$ to Blow

I know that Vera Wang is a hot, in-demand designer, but whenever I see her name on something I automatically think that the product will be needlessly overpriced. We can argue about high-style wedding dresses, but let's agree that these snazzy Vera Wang "Hurry Over" notecards available at Barnes & Noble are a little pricey. At $27 for 10 cards, the recipients of these cards will be cherished friends, or loved ones.

I'm sure she is a probably a nice lady, but really, quit trying to rob me, Vera Wang!

Blog Entry Soundtrack: "Shine a Light" by Wolf Parade

Monday, June 22, 2009

Progressive Getting Serious About Scooter Biz

Progressive Insurance is making a play for the scooter insurance business by working directly with Genuine Scooters and KYMCO. Progressive has created in-store marketing materials that dealers can share with customers including an FAQ, sample quotes and a dedicated website where consumers can get a quote. Buyers will also be able to call for quotes directly from the dealer showroom.

It's a smart move. Aligning themselves with two of the most popular scooter distributors in the US and making contact where scooterists buy their bikes gives Progressive an edge. Many new scooterists have no idea that they can/should insure their scooters, nor do they know which companies provide scooter insurance.

The Genuine site features "Flo" (Progressive's kooky spokesperson) on a Buddy. While KYMCO keeps it motorcycle-centric with their portal.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Spotted in Bloomingdales...

A confidential informer spotted this cool scooter shirt in Bloomies. No other info such as price, but maybe some enterprising scooteristi out there will want to do some recon work and report back.

Your anonymity will be ensured!

Friday, June 12, 2009

My two loves: Vespa + Mac

I was browsing Amazon looking for info on Laika (I've been thinking about that dog since I saw the moped seat...) and stumbled upon this book.

I'm not a Mac programmer, but I dig that they used a scooter on the cover.

If you want to Mac-nerd out, then get it a Amazon:

Blog Entry Soundtrack: "Rip it Up" by Little Richard

Thursday, June 11, 2009

George Clooney on Scooter

From TMZ.com

When in Italy...

Scoot! Issue # 50 shipped

Issue #50 is en route to subscribers, stores and scooter shops. Retailers should expect to receive their copies by June 8th with subscribers receiving their copies soon after.

If you have already received it, leave a comment of where you are located so we can get an idea of how fast they get around the country.

This issue is our 50th, and this golden "issue-versary" features:

* San Francisco Scooter Centre owner Barry Gwin's rare Lambretta D racer
* Kung-Fu master and scooter fan Alan Dollar shares his pedal scooter toys
* 150cc Shoot-Out: we test 5 popular scooter models
* Retrovespa: take a spin on a new old Vespa
* Scads of product reviews
* Lots of rally reports
* and of course 50 Reasons to Scoot!

Blog entry soundtrack: "Even in the Quietest Moments" by Supertramp

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Laika Custom Moped Seat

-- Post From My iPhone

Reminder--Ride to Work Day 6-15

Recently, I posted about Ride to Work day. Well, it is almost upon us, so check out the release just issued by RTW:

Motorcycle and scooter riders' 18th annual commuting day is this coming Monday, June 15th. Participation is estimated to triple the number of riders on the road. Motorcycle and scooter groups and organizations actively encourage riders to commute by cycle on this day.

Two wheeled commuters of all ages, and from all walks of life seek employer support for this form of transportation and increased public and government awareness of the positive value of riding.

More motorcycles and scooters in the mix of vehicles makes urban parking easier and traffic flow better, according to Ride to Work, a non-profit advocacy organization. Studies have also shown that across the same distances, the average cycle or scooter rider will reach their destinations in less time than automobile drivers. Many motorcycles and scooters also consume less resources per mile than automobiles.

"Riding to work on this day is fun and shows the positive value of motorcycling. For many people, riding is a socially responsible form of mobility that saves energy, helps the environment and provides a broad range of other public benefits," stated Andy Goldfine, this year's event organizer.

Contact Ride to Work Day, a 501 c4 nonprofit organization, at:
POB 1072, Proctor, Minnesota, 55810 USA

UPDATE: I messed up and put 8/15 but it is really June 15. I goofed!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Found on Flickr: Don Eduardo's Fascinating Photos

I found these images on Flikr of scooters in the midst of life in India. Great look at the everyday life of the Indian scooter. So different from USA scootering, but we all share the love of the two-wheels...

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Scooter Rosa Rally Coverage

Revolution Moto in Santa Rosa, CA threw their 3rd Scooter Rosa rally which provides scooterist with great rides in gorgeous Northern California wine country, but also raises money for the local Big Brother and Big Sisters. The rally was covered in The Santa Rosa Press-Democrat. The article also has a companion video.

Peak SC Rally Gets Ink

Peak Scooter Club in Colorado just had their annual rally, which was covered in the Colorado Springs Gazette. It was the tenth incarnation of the rally. Congrats, Peak SC!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Scooter sidecar dining

Came across this story by John Foley about a scooter food cart in the Examiner:
It was developed in Sonoma, California. Wine country. And the ingenuity that pops out of the cork laden region is exceptional. It could be the constant sampling of wine and bubbly that spurns such magnificent invention, or it could be the idle time that so many winemakers have to think in the late afternoon.

But for Terry Grimm and his partner, Nick Grimm, the cart is a product of their own invention. The duo operates Sorento Imports in a beautifully remodeled service station in downtown Sonoma.

The cart, pictured here comes with a customized sidecar that can be filled with gelato or other refrigerated products. The family Grimm is also in development on a Panini Scooter and possibly a Crepe Scooter- the French would eat this up.

A great publicity vehicle, perfect for sampling menu items, or delivering lunches or dinners, the scooter is listing out for around $10.000.00. A reasonable amount for a cart that can not only promote your business but possibly produce a profit.

A good portion of the cost must be the vintage scooter and sidecar. I never thought of using a sidecar as a food service option. Mostly, one thinks of a three wheel Ape or Lambro, but you can probably go faster on the Vespa with a sidecar.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Scoot! Rides the Honda SH150i

Scoot! staff members Mike and Josh went to Santa Cruz, CA to get a ride on the new Honda SH150i. Check out this video where the guys (and our friend Christine) hare their thoughts on this new scooter. Look for a full review in Scoot! issue # 51 late this summer.