New Online Lambretta (brand) Store goes live… Win a Lambretta, and get free gifts.

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Fresh up today, the new online store for all that Lambretta branded stuff. Headwear, Suits, Watches, Accessories… some of it’s good, some of it’s ok, some of it misses the mark for me. I’ve written about that all before, here, I won’t cover old ground!

Interesting opening offers though; make any purchase  before the end of the year and you’ll be entered into a draw to win a brand new Lambretta (not the beautiful Series 2 shown… boo!). There’s also some free stuff with your order… stickers, wallets, and a jubilee bus tin. 

Remember, although these guys own the Lambretta brand, and the rights to put the Lambretta name to everything from aftershave to socks (I’ve got some socks, they’re not bad), they’re not the only game in town… and you can get some great stuff from the Lambretta Club of Great Britain (LCGB) Shop. Here.

Check out the Lambretta Store here.

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You could own this stunning Bolan/T-Rex tribute Lammy (If you’ve got a spare £12k)

UPDATE: The scooter featured below sold for £11,900…

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If muralled, plated, engraved custom Lammies are your thing (they aint mine, but I CAN see the attraction), then here’s your chance to own one of the best out there. The work, and the money, that’s gone into it is immense. It’s based on an all Italian TV 175, Series 3… and as with most of these beautifully customised machines the engine has been seriously tuned too… although I’m not suprised  it has done “a minimum of road miles” since; would you want to zoom about on it when you’d spent so much on paint and plating?

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The list of modifications is immense, from one-off, hand made brake levers in the shape of a Gibson ‘flying `V’ guitar, to signatures by Andy Ellison of John’s children (Bolans first band) and Helen Shapiro. Check it out on eBay here. But you’d better be quick, because as I type this, the auction only has 4hrs to run. And it’s currently sitting at £11,900, with 24 bids.

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EBretta – An update

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Right, I’ve found out a little bit more about the EBretta, the Electric powered Lambretta straight out of Ho Chi Minh City (See my previous post) . It is a fully operational prototype that has been developed and tested, so it IS real world, real technology, and it actually works. Even more exciting than that, a Mk 2 production version is currently under development.

The power is supplied by a brushless 13″ motor which generates 3kW. This will generate a torque of 180 Nm, which translates to a top speed of over 60 kmph (roughly 40 mph). While this might, at first seem less than impressive it would be fine for around town and commuting, with the engine having enough torque to accelerate uphill and carry a ‘larger person’ – I think I might qualify for that last category!

The Mk1 Version has a total of 16 , Lithium Iron Phosphate battery cells.  Lithium Iron Phosphate battery cells are lighter and hold more charge than traditional lead acid or silicone batteries, and are safer than lithium ion batteries. The batteries are protected by a top of the range controller unit and a Battery Management System that monitors battery levels and prevents over charging. The charge time is approx. 3 hours, and the run time, which will vary due to driving conditions, “easily exceeds” 40 km.

The figures above are all for the Mk1 EBretta, and, as I said,  there is a Mk2 under development. The technology is moving fast in the world of electric vehicles, and the Mk 2 will use tech that wasn’t even around 12 months ago, including Sevcon digital displays and battery management systems that are built in to the batteries rather than separate units. Smaller, higher performance battery units are in the pipeline, although at the moment the cost of these is prohibitive, as the technologies mature this should come down.

They’re even looking at adding accessories that will charge your laptop, tablet or phone as you drive. I wonder what’s next… an iPad integrated into your toolbox door?

So, what’s the verdict?

I think the guys at Saigon Scooter Centre have given us a glimpse of the future. I expect building a modern, electric engine into a classic scooter frame has presented them with more than few issues, but the finished result looks amazing. Performance wise, this is never going to be a machine for speed merchants, or one to take on a long distance rally… But that’s not what it’s been built for. For a daily commuter, or a round town runabout this would be ideal. And with most of the running problems of a ‘traditional’ Lambretta coming down to fuel or electrics, it takes one of those items out of the equation. And I’ve got this far without even mentioning the fuel saving benefits… imagine getting home from work and just plugging your Lambretta* in for three hours. Never buy another litre of petrol or 2stroke oil again!

Would I have one? Hell yeah. Although I would probably have to fit an MP3 player and speakers to blast out the traditional Lambretta exhaust note, and carry a small aerosol of “eau de 2stroke” to spray into the air occasionally. I’d love to know what YOU think though… let me know in the comments (I’m afraid you have to register for a Posterous account, but hey, that’s FREE, and they don’t bother you with loads of emails… and you might even want to start your own blog!)

Look out for reviews and reports in the scooter press soon. If you’ve got any questions let me know and I’ll try and find out, or you can contact the Siagon Scooter Centre directly.

Find out more at the Saigon Scooter Centre website or Facebook page.

They’re taking orders now!

*SSC is marketing the EBretta as a “Lambretta replica” no doubt so there are no licensing issues with the owners of the Lambretta trademark.

EBretta – An update

Right, I’ve found out a little bit more about the EBretta. It is a fully operational prototype that has been developed and tested, so it IS real world, real technology, and it actually works. Even more exciting than that, a Mk 2 production version is currently under development.

The power is supplied by a brushless 13″ motor which generates 3kW. This will generate a torque of 180 Nm, which translates to a top speed of over 60 kmph (roughly 40 mph). While this might, at first seem less than impressive it would be fine for around town and commuting, with the engine having enough torque to accelerate uphill and carry a ‘larger person’ – I think I might qualify for that last category!

The Mk1 Version has a total of 16 , Lithium Iron Phosphate battery cells.  Lithium Iron Phosphate battery cells are lighter and hold more charge than traditional lead acid or silicone batteries, and are safer than lithium ion batteries. The batteries are protected by a top of the range controller unit and a Battery Management System that monitors battery levels and prevents over charging. The charge time is approx. 3 hours, and the run time, which will vary due to driving conditions, “easily exceeds” 40 km.

The figures above are all for the Mk1 EBretta, and, as I said,  there is a Mk2 under development. The technology is moving fast in the world of electric vehicles, and the Mk 2 will use tech that wasn’t even around 12 months ago, including Sevcon digital displays and battery management systems that are built in to the batteries rather than separate units. Smaller, higher performance battery units are in the pipeline, although at the moment the cost of these is prohibitive, as the technologies mature this should come down.

So, what’s the verdict?

I think the guys at Saigon Scooter Centre have given us a glimpse of the future. I expect building a modern, electric engine into a classic scooter frame has presented them with more than few issues, but the finished result looks amazing. Performance wise, this is never going to be a machine for speed merchants, or one to take on a long distance rally… But that’s not what it’s been built for. For a daily commuter, or a round town runabout this would be ideal. And with most of the running problems of a ‘traditional’ Lambretta coming down to fuel or electrics, it takes one of those items out of the equation.Would I have one? Hell yeah. Although I would probably have to fit an MP3 player and speakers to blast out the traditional Lambretta exhaust note, and carry a small aerosol of “eau de 2stroke” to spray into the air occasionally.

Find out more at the Saigon Scooter Centre website or Facebook page

Coming soon… an electric Lambretta!

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Right, I don’t know much about this, just found these great pics over at Basque Radical Mods blog. Eminating from the Saigon Scooter Centre, there appears to be an electric Lambretta in the offing.

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Now I’ve blogged about electric Lambretta’s before… here’s one in development over at Soundspeed Scooters… but there doesn’t seem to have been much movement on that lately. Then there was the EcoLa, and despite sounding like a food poisoning bug, this was a bit more promising, a Model D rigged to run on batteries. 

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The Ebretta from Saigon Scooter Centre seems a different kettle of fish… a prodcut that you can actually buy. Contrary to some horror stories coming out of Vietnam, the Siagon Scooter Centre seems to have buit a good reputation for the quality of their scoots, their retsorations and their innovative products… so I’d expect the Ebretta would be quality machine. It certainly looks the part in the pictures. f you are one of those sad, misguiged people who would rather put their leg over a Vespa, it looks like they cater for you guys too; Based on a PX, they are calling it a V-tronic. But then again, if Vespa’s are your thing I doubt you’d be reading this blog. 

There is always going to be a majority of classic Lambretta riders who will perfer a geared, two-stroke powered scooter. But, if you’re an eco warrio Lambretta fan who’s in the market for a new scooter, and aren’t convinced by the syling of the LN, LS and LJ models, this might be ticking your boxes. 

Watch this space, and I’ll keep you posted when I find out any more information. Rumour has it, Scootering magazine will be running a feature with full specs etc, but if I hear anything before they go to press, I’ll let you know.

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Saigon Scooter Centre’s Facebook page

Nice Lambretta Video “Journey Mr Who by Innocenti”

Not sure of the story behind this vid… I suspect it’s a music video… and it’s tagged “indonesia” so I reckon that’s where it originates from. The mod/scooter scene looks pretty vibrant!

Lambretta used in shoe ad…

Never mind where she got the shoes… where did he get the scoot?

If you want to make your ad sexy and stylish, just add a couple of pretty girls and a Lambretta. Nerver fails. Nice Lammy, used to flog footwear.

Via the Scooterist blog

Lambretta LJ50

I posted a while ago, that in addition to the 125 and 150 LN & LS models, there looked like there was going to be a 50cc LJ model. Well, anyone that has been watching eBay will tell you, there is. Well, ctually there are two models, The LJ, which like the original LI Series 1, had it’s headlight on the corncasing, and the LT which has it’s headlight more conventially mounted.

I haven’t got a lot of spec on these, but here’s what I do have. 

Engine type: 2 stroke 
Displacement:
49cc
Cooling System: Air
Fuel System: Carburettor
Transmission: Automatic
Front Suspension: Telescopic Fork
Rear Suspension: Unit Swing Arm
Front Brake: Disc
Rear Brake: Drum
Front Tyre: 110/70-12
Rear Tyre: 120/70-12

Price is expected to be around £1899.00

Check it out, and reserve yours if you fancy one, on eBay here.

Fancy something a little different?

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Right. First off, this clearly comes under the “That’s not a Lambretta” header. But until I get round to writing a proper piece about Lambro’s, this’ll have to do you. I’m not sure it even comes under the category of scooter. It’s actually a BSA Ariel 3.

Being a proper moped (notice the pedals you have to use to start it) It wouldn’t be quick. I can’t imaging that once you loaded up the ‘luggage area’ (that would take lttle more than your average topbox) you’d be breaking many speed limits. Even going downhill, with a tailwind in a 30mph zone. In fact, it would be one of the few vehicles on the road I would stand any chance of overtaking.

As with most items in those halycon days before the PC brigade had any say, the advertising shots featured a girl in a bikini. Although, to be brutally honest, I can’t remember a time I saw a vehicle with less sex appeal!

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And it’s for sale. So why not get yourself a piece of British motorcyle history? The downside, The Ariel 3 is ugly, slow and impractacle. The upside, it’s rare, and actually it’s SO ugly, it’s strangely attractive… and it’s proper 1970’s… right down to the baby-poo and white colour scheme. Biggest upside though is it’s cheap. It’s on sale on the Car&Classic website for a mere £450. So if your a hipster with a thing for the seventies… like three wheel but can’t quite scrape together the cash for a Bond Bug, you may be able to bag yourself a bargain.

Lambretta – the movie

Not sure of the provenance of this fine piece of footage, if you follow this link it will take you to Peter Janovick’s YouTube page, but it looks to me like it’s been taped off the telly at some point in the late ’90’s. If it was, it passed me by on it’s original airing… and the late 90’s has itself become a bit of history I suppose. God I feel old sometimes!

Anyway, if you know a bit about Lammies, it’s an interesing 26 minutes, and if you’ve stumbled across this website somehow without knowing about Mr Innocenti’s fine creations, it’s virtually essential viewing.