The Vespa at Kissell Motorsports for its annual Pennsylvania Safety Inspection.
As the odometer ticks toward 35 thousand miles on the 11 year-old scooter I’ve been thinking about what to expect for the future. The new thumps heard and felt when encountering a rough spot on the road suggest new shock absorbers aren’t far off if not overdue. Another belt change is just around the corners and some aging hoses on the engine call out for replacement.
All of this have me wondering — How long with a Vespa scooter last? What is the Vespa scooter lifespan?
Back in 2008 I remember having a conversation on this subject with Piaggio’s North American brand manager. His response to the question — take care of the maintenance and there’s no reason you can’t ride on to one hundred thousand miles. The rub though is the maintenance. Especially if you pay someone else to do it. As the value of the scooter continues to diminish the cost of the service can rise to half or three-quarters of the scooter’s value. My friend Paul thinks I’m nuts to keep investing in the scooter and should just buy a new one. Considerations of money has never been my strong suit. I’m driven more by need and desire.
I desire my Excalibur Gray Vespa GTS 250ie scooter.
I know of other Vespa riders through the Modern Vespa forum who have double and triple the mileage my machine has and are going strong. Most also do their own maintenance. I can do the simple stuff but have not had the time or interest in changing belts or fuel pumps. If I want to keep this particular scooter I may have to rethink things.
It’s no secret that I’ve desired a motorcycle of my own. I remember wandering the showrooms of motorcycle dealers when I was a teenager dreaming of the road. I do the same thing now. When my wife asked yesterday what I want for Father’s Day I just told her she knows what I want. She does know. Since she doesn’t read my blog someone will have to direct her to these pictures.
I’ve never ridden the BMW G650 GS. I’ve put a lot of miles on the F650 and F800 and loved those. I expect this one would be similar in nature and performance. I’ve always like the way they look and would change the character of riding experiences I have with the Vespa. And might even expand the stories I can tell.
I love the yellow and black BMW motorcycles. A year older and 10 thousand more miles on the odometer, this BMW G650 GS is a promising option with hard side cases, ABS braking and heated grips. I can see myself riding a motorcycle for a different experience from the Vespa. Not better, just different.
Some have suggested the scooter is safer. I don’t understand the logic though can appreciate the feeling. I’m a generally slow and meandering rider. With the Vespa capable of 75mph it’s hard to imagine me riding any faster on a motorcycle just because it can go faster. And the lighter weight of the Vespa (40 pounds) might suggest a more nimble machine that can dodge danger more effectively but that’s a stretch. ABS brakes might certainly offset those concerns.
But back to the question of the longevity of the Vespa scooter I’m currently riding. Obviously a person can keep a machine running indefinitely with time and money. I suppose I’m just pondering if there’s a line somewhere suggesting an expense too far.
What is the Vespa scooter lifespan?