Came across a ONE MILLION POUND eBay listing for a bunch of Lambrettas –
not much more information to share at the moment, but I’m on the case, and I’ll post more when I know more. Ok, Bit of an update; the seller has given me a bit more information. This is part of a new shipment coming over from Italy next week, all 100% Italian, original condition, standard machines. The collection includes some very desirable items, so if you’re in the market for an original spec Italian Lambretta, in exceptional original condition, stay tuned!
We all love our 2-strokes – but they’re not the most environmentally friendly of machines. Many people think the future of transportation is electric. With the likes of VW, BMW and even Jaguar joining Tesla in bringing electric vehicles to market, is the writing on the wall for fossil fuels? After all – when even Milan – the home of the Lambretta – bans classic scooters – you have to start taking these things seriously.
An electric scooter is not a new idea – and I’ve featured a few on the blog already. I even featured the first footage on the internet of the new Electric Lambretta – which is rumoured to be coming to market soon. Piaggio isn’t missing out either, and you can buy a Vespa Elettrica today. But what if you love the lines of an authentic vintage Lambretta or Vespa?
Well, now you don’t have to choose between a new, eco-friendly electric scooter, and vintage classic. Codenamed “Project E” Retrospective Scooters are producing a conversion kit for the most popular models of Lambretta & Vespa. They will remove the old petrol engine, electrics and cabling, and install a DC brushless electric motor, motor controller and lithium-ion battery. Ease of riding, reliability, economy and environmental footprint are all brought into the 21st Century – but most importantly the exterior styling remains totally original. A lot of effort has been put into cleverly hiding the modern tech behind dummy plastic engine casings keeping your classic looking as authentic as possible.
Retrospective will be offering the conversion as a DIY kit, with prices starting at £2,485. They will fit it for you for around £500. You can even add it as an option if you’re having a scooter restored. You’ll also have to factor in the cost of the batteries – not included in the kit price, and they run to £850. You can choose to have just the one battery, or improve your range by adding another one or more.
Project E is compatible with most popular Lambretta models – LI Series 1, 2 & 3 and GP models can be converted. Retrospective are working on a J Range conversion, and a LD will follow at some stage.
30 – 110 Mile Range
Retrospective offer a variety of different lithium-ion battery options. Each has been made specifically to suit a range of needs – from a Sunday run-around to an everyday commuter.
One of the great things about this conversion is that it can be fitted without butchering your classic scoot – as Retrospective say “No scooters were harmed in this conversion, no cutting, welding or grinding; the conversion perfectly fits the classic frames” this makes the conversion is completely reversible – so if you want to go back to burning dead dinosaur fuel, you can.
The future is bright. The future is retro.
The Retrospective conversion may be the future for classic scooters. And what could be more eco than riding a machine originally made maybe 50 or 60 years ago, powered by electricity?
Retrospective Scooters are based in Walthamstow, London E17, and as well as designing and building the electric scooter conversion, they are experts in Scooter Restorations, Servicing and Repairs. Check out their website here.
Images are used with permission of Retrospective Scooters.
Spotted this first class scooter on eBay… A Spanish Post Office (Correos) Serveta, quite rare by all accounts. It’s quite a basic model, lacking the indicators of Serveta’s of similar vintage. If Postman Pedro is anything like the ones that drive our little red vans, they never used the indicators anyway. Anyway, it’s much cooler than the push bikes our lot get to ride. Most of these scoots were scrapped after they went out of service, hence the rarity value, and relatively high price for a ‘basic’ Serveta. It doesn’t need my stamp of approval, but I think it’s got an appeal all of it’s own.
Here it is on eBay
I featured a ’50s style racer a couple of days ago, moving on a couple of decades gets us to this ’70s style, full faired metalflake racer. This one is on eBay, sitting at a mere £2,000 at the moment. The downside, is you’ll have to drop your own engine in, as it doesn’t come with one. But that might be an upside for you 🙂
Here’s the link
According to Tumblr,
where I nicked this image from erm, found this… this is a picture of Carnaby Street, London, 4th April 1966. It was a photoshoot for opening of new Tomcat Shop. The model Christine Spooner and designer (now property developer) Irvine Sellar. The Lambretta, I think, is a TV175. The cheetah was called Kinna. Rumours that Kinna came from Cheam are unsubstantiated!
Apparently, Tom Jones was also at the shoot. Theres shots with him, Christine, and running down the road with Kinna – but unfortunately I’ve not seen any with him and the TV!
If anyone can think of a better heading for this post, let me know in the comments. I don’t think “Carnaby Street Cheetah” quite cuts it! I’ve ‘tweaked’ one of the suggestions below – added ‘spotted’ because cheetahs have got spots… gettit? Oh, suit yourselves.
From Isabel Costa’s Sixties blog, where there is a ton of stuff on Carnaby Street.
UPDATE: I heard this morning that Irvine Sellar, (the guy in this picture – and owner of a couple of Carnaby Street boutiques) died yesterday. I didn’t know anything about him until I wrote this post, but seems he was quite a character. There’s a good piece here in the Architect’s Journal. RIP.
Happy Thanksgiving Colonials! Enjoy your pre-Christmas Turkey!
If you want to take your mind off the US elections, here’s a picture of a couple pretty girls on a Lambretta. You’re welcome.
‘Original condition’ may be a synonym for a bit rough. Just as ‘patina’ has become a synonym for what I used to call an RAF scoot – Rusty as F••k. But IMHO there’s a lot to like about this SX. For a start it’s all there… (well as far as I can tell from the pics, barring the rear frame badge, which shouldn’t be a problem). The panels look like they’re a good snug fit. Of course it needs a bit of TLC. And the engine will need a tinker with. Ok, it’s not a 200, but it IS an SX, a genuine one, not an LI dressed up, and it’s not silly money. It’s not cheap… but at todays prices, £3,550.00 looks like pretty good value to me. You could go either way with this one, a ‘conserved restoration’ or a a full nut and bolt shiney shiney job. Your call.
Here it is on eBay
So you’ve spent a few quid getting your scoot the way you want it… why not spend a few more documenting it for posterity? You could take some snaps yourself, or do it properly (your the kind of person that does things properly, right?), and get it shot professionally in a studio… except most studios are set up to shoot people, not motorcycles and scooters.
That’s where ProBikeArt comes into the picture. Professional studio photography that captures the lines and details of your Lambretta in the best light. Photographer Ian Daisley specialises in shooting classic, racing and cherished motorcycles – but he’s shot a few Lambrettas – as you can see!
A basic studio session costs just £145… including your finished digital images supplied on disk, and a 300x400mm framed fine art print.
ProBikeArt are located near Matlock in Derbyshire. Get in touch with them here.
All images used by permission, and © Ian Daisley / ProBikeART (www.probikeart.co.uk)