Retrospective Scooters Open Day

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Beat the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) – Go ELECTRIC!

If you’re in London this weekend, get yourself down to our Retrospective Scooters workshop/showroom in Walthamstow for their open day.  The focus of the day is the forthcoming London Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and how you can get around paying the £12.50 a day that you’ll get charged for riding your nasty dirty old ‘non-compliant’ scooter. One of the options is to convert your classic Lambretta (or Vespa) to an electric one – I featured the kit in a post, here, a little while ago. They’ll have lots of electric scoots charged up and ready to test ride.

On the day there’s;

  • Test ride one of the many electric Vespa’s and Niu scooters.
  • Get advice from the Retrospective Scooters team of experts – ask how to convert your classic Lambretta with a custom conversion kit
  • Freshly cooked food from local stalls
  • Craft beer from a neighbouring brewery
  • Listen to DJs spinning the decks all afternoon

So get yourself down to Unit 1, Lockwood Way, Walthamstow, London E17 5RB from 1pm this Saturday.

While we’re on the subject of Electric Vehicles, rumours are reaching Lambrettista Towers that the new Electric Lambretta Vendetta, (as well as a very exciting sounding 325cc petrol variant) is due to come to market shortly. Stay tuned. When I hear more, you’ll hear more. That’s a promise.

 

 

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Ikea’s new India store offers delivery by solar-powered tuk-tuk

ikea_rickshawOriginally 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.

Link to the original story on Curbed.

Just to add some Lambretta flavour, here’s a  couple of (very) short videos of the Lambretta version of the three-wheeler commercial vehicle, The Lambro.

What’s the Buzz?

IMG_9050What’s the Buzz? The Buzz is the future. It’s electric. And it’s Vespa shaped. Aiming to do for the scooter market what Tesla have done for cars, Buzz is recreating yesterdays scooter style with tomorrows technology.

Based in Vietnam, where there’s a lot of love for vintage scoots, Buzz are ‘British Engineered’. My guess is it’s the guys at the Saigon Scooter Centre who are behind this initiative, but I may be wrong!

IMG_9056The images shown are prototypes – the final design promising to morph into a ‘more modern take on this classic shop’ – well, I for one hope they don’t change too much. You know what side of the fence I sit on in the Vespa vs. Lambretta debate… but Vespas are the second most beautiful scooters ever made – so this retro styling looks pretty good!

Of course, it comes down to more that just good looks. These vehicles have got to perform. But with claimed top speeds of 120 kph and a 0-100 kph of under 4 seconds (for the 5000W Buzz1 model) it’s not something to worry about. Even the more modest 2000W models top end of 80kph is fine for commuting and city riding.

IMG_9065The two big ‘pain points’ with electric vehicles are range and charging. The Buzz scooters have a range of 240km – nearly 150 miles in old money. Pretty impressive. And improvements in battery tech could boost that to 400km. If your riding any more than that between charges, your doing some serious level scootering.IMG_3909

Charging should be just as pain free. Plug in overnight for a slow charge (6 hours), or, if you’re in a rush, fast charge to 80% capacity in just 12 minutes.

IMG_9084There’s even an option with a removable roof system – featuring built in solar panels – the goal being you ‘ride for free’ and never have to plug your scoot into the grid. To be honest, I’d rather plug my scooter in once a day than ride around with a roof, but I think this would work well for delivery vehicles. Delivery vehicles in sunny places!

Being 2017, all Buzz bikes will have connectivity to your phone. A RFID system means that you’ll never worry about losing your keys again. You’ll also be able to locate your bike, and check your battery status on your phone.

So, sounds pretty good right? If only it was Lambretta shaped! Well… rumours reach Lambrettista towers that (as well as some other exciting news) an electric Lambretta Vendetta is in the pipeline. Watch this space.

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Find out more on the Buzz website.

Via OffTheClothBoff and Modculture.

Smoke & Mirrors

Filmed over the August Bank Holiday in Brighton, England. Scooters decend on the iconic seafront, to pose, meet and reconnect. They dress sharp, ride some of the world’s best scooters and are committed to the scene. Two-stroke films were there, this is what they saw… Because they filmed it – rather well – you can see it too.

Gorgeous Golden Age Scooter models

21231586_1917928411765279_7738894821993192682_nI got sent a link from Olivier in Toulouse about these fabulous aluminium and resin models based on scooters from “the golden age”. The models are going to be produced in a limited series soon, through Ulele, a European crowdfunding site.

I get sent a few things like this… scooter related ‘merch’, and to be honest, a lot of it is pretty poor. I think these are great though… Olivier has managed to convey the essence of each scooter in the minimum number of elements; really, really cool.

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As well as LD, (probably still the most popular Lambretta in France), and a Vespa, there is a rather lovely Peugeot. The models aren’t cheap, but, as ever, you get what you pay for. They’d make a great present for anyone who loves their classic scoots.

Check out the details on the Ulele site, or Olivier’s Facebook page.

Semaphore indicator accessory…

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Not seen these before (although there seem to be a few listed on the Italian eBay site) Pop-up or ‘semaphore’ indicators for a Lambretta (or a classic scooter anyway). They remind me of the ones I used to have on my old split-screen Moggy Minor. I think they’d look good on a restored older open frame model (A-F), or an LC or LD.

You’d need deep pocket though – they’re priced at €2,000!

 On the Italian eBay site, here.

Milano Taranto Anniversary Race Lammie

lambretta-corse50_3Found this over on the Italian version of eBay… a racing Lambretta  prepared  for the classic Milano Taranto stage race – a classic that ranks alongside the Paris-Dakar, Bol d’Or and Isle of Man TT. Based, by the look of it on a cutdown LD (or it could be a LC… any shaft drive experts out there care to enlighten me) rather than the more usually seen race prepped D’s it’s got a bunch of race ‘goodies’ including a double tank and a trumpet carb. Certainly looks the business.

I don’t think this bike raced in the 50’s version of the Milano Taranto (although I could be wrong) but in one of the more recent anniversary events. The only real giveaway is the Castrol logo… that version dates from the 70’s I think. It’s probably clear on the eBay site, but the subtleties of the Italian langue escape me.If you know more, please enlighten me in the comments!

If you want to find out more about the race, there’s a great website here. If you want to find out more about the scoot, and male get a bid in, Here’s the eBay link

If this scoot reminds you of something (it did me) it might be this race rep Vespa. I think the Vespa might actually be prettier… but the Lambretta is more badass!

Scootering, Maltese Style.

20150426_173710Sandro from Malta got in touch, initially interested in doing a deal on the Maserati scooter I featured a while back. I saw he had some interesting scoots, and persuaded him to send me some pictures…

Here’s his Lambrettas…

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Here is his Vespa U… 20150510_192046

The Vespa U is one of the rarest of all Vespas. Looking a lot like the Allstate model produced for the US market, the Vespa U was a ‘bare bones’ economy model. But the public at the time preferred spending a little more for a more refined /well equipped Vespa, and so it was cancelled  after  only machines were 6000 produced. Lambretta had a similar idea with their ‘E’ model, a similar commercial flop. 3,500 U’s were sold off to either Iran or Iraq (accounts vary!)for use by the government post office – and disappeared after that. Today, there are maybe 20 machines left on the planet…and Sandro has one 🙂 So, initially a commercial failure but now one of the most desirable of Vespas!


And here’s his rather lovely Iso Diva Milano.

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It’s a Series 1 (and an early Series 1 at that), replete with super rare period accessories. Itself a rare machine, with only 2,000 series 1’s produced…

EDIT: I’ve just noticed the Iso Milano that was on eBay before Christmas has been relisted, now you can see how beautiful it could look, are you interested? Here it is on eBay


Finally,  here’s some other Maltese scooters…

The scene in Malta is quite strong, with 70 or 80 classic scooters on the road, (and many more in garages and back yards – aint that like everywhere!).

Thanks Sandro, I appreciate the pics, and great way to kick off the New Year on the blog!  If you’ve got a scooter collection, or would like your club featured (wherever you are in the world), get in touch and we’ll see if I can feature you on the blog.

Happy New Year

vespalambrettaraceHappy New Year everybody! 2017 is a BIG year for Lambrettisti, with, amongst many other things, the 70th Anniversary celebrations taking place. More about that later, in a dedicated post. In the meantime, before I kick off with new posts, I just wanted to wish all my contributors, commenters, supporters and readers a slightly belated happy, healthy and prosperous new year!

Vespa electtrica

e-vespaI don’t often cover ‘The Wasp’ on here, but there is big news today out of Milan. At EICAMA (the Milan Motorcycle Show) today The Piaggio Group announced what the future may look like for Vespa… and it looks pretty much like the Vespas of the last 70 years (which is a good thing!). But it’s electric. Which, I also think is a good thing.

I know, I know, we all love our smelly old 2-strokes. But that ship sailed a long time ago, and electric is the future. And if you can balance style, performance, range and price you’re on to a winning formula. The Vespa Electtrica is has got the styling nailed –it’s  based on the successful current Primavera model.

To quote from the official Vespa site “Introducing the Vespa Elettrica project, the new mobility solution according to the most elegant and beloved two-wheeled brand in the world that takes a step into the future in complete consistency with the values that have accompanied its history.

The Vespa Elettrica will, first and foremost, be a true Vespa, bringing the very latest in electric technology to a vehicle that will retain all the features that have been vital to its success. The style, agility, ease of use and riding pleasure will be the same as the Vespa we have always known, with the addition of technological and innovative connectivity solutions. A perfect mix of excitement, technology and environmental friendliness that only Vespa can create. Like it has always done in its first seventy years of history.”

So not a lot of hard facts about performance, or range then. Or price – though, if on launch the government ‘plug-in’ grant offering a £1,500 rebate on the cost of electric scooters / bikes is still in effect, that will help, big time. They have got the styling sorted. If you like Vespas, of course : ).

It’s not the first time that Vespa has explored the world of electric vehicles, as The ScooterNova blog  points out. They are also where I first read about the Electric Vespa, so stay tuned to them for further updates. I’m sure ScooterLab and Scootering will be all over it too.

The official Vespa site is here.