Originally based on the Indian version of a Vespa Ape, the three-wheeler rickshaw is ubiquitous throughout the Indian sub-continent, and indeed Asia. Ikea is using a solar-powered of these as at least 20% of their delivery fleet for their new Hyderabad flagship store. The Ikea version will be charged at the store, running off of solar power harvested from 4,000 panels on the roof. Any excess energy gathered will be used for lighting and inside the store.
I’ve not written much about scooter racing on this blog, is something I’ve always wanted to do. The guys that push Lambrettas and Vespas to their max on the track are a special kind of rider (the word nutters was actually the first one that came to mind). In fact the only sporting event I’ve covered is an old Scooter Scrambling event from the sixties and the Red Bull Lingotto Special, where classic scoots race around the roof of the old FIAT factory in Turin. That vid is worth a watch if you haven’t seen it yet!
But here’s a scooter sport that I’ve never come across before. Ape cross. Watch the video, which explains it better than I could. I know Ape’s are Vespas… but I’ve always had a soft spot for them.(See my Tuxi post) If there is a Lambro version of this sport, I’d love to see it!
It’s been a while since I posted, ant to be honest, a couple of weeks since I’ve ridden my scoot. Spanners out at the weekend, fitting a new kickstart assembly. Wish me luck.
Here’s a nice little feature from a Vietnamese TV show on the scootering/restoration scene. Unless you can speak Vietnamese, forget the commentary, and just enjoy the movie. It kicks off with some film of Saigon back in the day, a very cosmopolitan and sophisticated place by the look of it. It then goes on to feature the work of the Saigon Scooter Centre, and some very nice Lammies. A very nice S2 at 7:18!
After about 8 mins there’s some nice footage of VW bug and bus restos, stick with it if your a fan of the Vespa Ape, as the program finishes on that. Nice.
A new feature this, where I highlight the webiste of a Lambretta owners club from around the world. To kick us off, I go to the spiritual home of the Lambretta, Italy. Liguria in fact, the coastal region of north west Italy famous for it’s beautiful beaches, picturesque little towns, and (altthough I must say most of Italy is famous for this) it’s great food. Liguria is also home to the historic city and seaport of Genoa. You can probably tell, although a proud Scotsman, I am a bit of an Italiaphile, even wearing the country’s tricolour on my bash hat.
So, Lambrettistas, for my first Lambretta Club of the month I bring you The Lambretta Club of Liguria. There’s some great stuff on the website, pics and videos of their various get togethers and events, they even have an annual “Innocenti Day”. But my favourite part has to be what is usually the dullest part of the website… the part where they list the committee – as each of the committee has a caricature of them, astride their Lambretta of course, by the very talented Federico. Great illustrations!
Phew, the unexpected sunshine is fantastic scooter riding weather… and maybe you can even squeeze in one more trip to the beach. And we all know the English Seaside and scooter go together like cheese and marmalade (try it, it works!).
If you’re going, there’s few better places than Lyme Regis, Dorset… on of the extra attractions for me is this beautiful Tuk Tuk Taxi (or Tukxi!) What better way to see Lyme. Den, Tukxi’s owner, will also hire her out for weddings, promotions, TV and film work… check out the rather nicely put together website for all the details!
I know this is a Vespa based Tuk Tuk, not a Lambretta, but she is unarguably beautiful. And I’m going to throw in a little bit of extra trivia for you. The model is a Piaggio Calessino, (one of less than a thousand made), and it’s base model, as you will doubtless know is called the Ape. Not Ape to rhyme with Grape… but pronounced A–pey …the Italian for “bee”. Because Vespa is the Italian for Wasp… geddit? These scooter based vehicles were real workhorses for many years around Europe, the backbone of many a small business. To see one based on a Lambretta, check my Café Scooteria post.