The Lynx Effect

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Funny how things happen. As I was writing my post on indicator gloves, the Lambretta that kept coming to mind was the Serveta Lince (or Lynx). And then, browsing eBay for Lammies (just window shopping I’m afraid) I come across a Lynx. Can’t remember having seen one for sale online before, and certainly not  one in this condition… basically “as new”, unsold form the dealer!

Now, back in the day, I remembered being pretty anti this Spanish revision of the classic Lambretta look… The previous Serveta’s 125 and 150 Specials and Jet 200’s… had classic Italian good looks. With the hexagonal headlight trim, from the front, on a good day people thought you might be riding an SX.

But, in my opinion, the Lynx (I’ll continue to use the English translation, rather than the  original Spanish “Lince” name) was the Lambretta equivalent of a Vespa PX. An improvement over what went before in many ways… but just fugly. (Sorry all you PX owners and riders, but I never liked them. And although they too have now gained classic status, they are still not quite my cup of tea). Improvements like 12v electrics and electronic ignition are things we take for granted now, but were exotic, and fairly expensive modifications back in the 80’s. Or they seemed expensive to me, if memory serves. They came as standard on the Lynx, but weren’t enough to overcome the styling issues. Serveta’s, at least amongst my circle were a step down from a genuine Italian Lammy too. Of course, they weren’t as bad as a “curryburner”, SIL GP… which had a pretty poor (and probably undeserved) reputation at the time. Back to the Lynx though… and modern consensus has it that the Serveta build quality was as good, or better than that of the Italian originals.

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But, perception is everything. And while the PX line took off and did great things for Vespa, (and continues to with the 2010 relaunched PX range)  the Lynx withered on the vine.  I’ve got the feeling (can anyone back me up on this?) they were significantly more expensive… and they were certainly harder to get hold of, with only a few dealers having demonstrators. While the PX was an all new bike, fresh from the ground up, The Lynx was another facelift for a classic Lambretta, and, for a Lammy, it just wasn’t pretty enough.

With the benefit of hindsight, I think the Lynx looks pretty good. They definitely have a retro 80’s vibe going on. Their initial unpopularity has become a plus, rarity being a tick in the positive column these days. And if you want one, you can get one, on eBay today. You might even attract more attention than a restored SX on a scooter rally. And certainly more than a PX!

So did you own one? Do you? What is your opinion / experience of this overlooked 80’s classic from Spain?

Serveta Lynx Video on YouTube

eBay Link.

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Indicator gloves

The first thing I did when I got my first Lambretta (actually a Serveta LI 150 Special) was to take a hacksaw to  the indicator stems. This was probably illegal, and it certainly puzzled my safety conscious dad. But they just didn’t look right. And unless you’ve got a penchant for an original 80’s style Spanish bike, (be it a Special or a Lince 200), indicators just don’t fit the Lambretta look.

The one possible exception to this rule, is original 60’s aftermarket accessories… such as the Ulma “Fried Eggs” that I have a picture of somewhere. I’ll dig it out, and post it.

An alternative solution for those needing to indicate their intentions to other motorists may come from the cycling world… with these indicator gloves. Via Bless This Stuff. I’m not sure though. Anybody seen a more elegant solution, or do Lambretta riders and orange flashing llghts just not go together?ImageImageImage