Best 150cc small scooter?

I’ve finally come around to the idea of getting a scooter. Selling the Hartford HD200 (although it breaks my heart to do so), keeping the Ninja for the weekends, and finally having something a bit more practical to use around town for those Costco runs and rainy days when I don’t want to get my legs wet.

The scooter will also be used by my girlfriend for the occasional longer trip to Kenting or the east coast, so it needs to be good on the open road as well as around town. I want a compact machine that is fast and fun to drive but also relatively light and easy to handle for my girlfriend, so I’m not interested in the maxi-size scooters. I’m leaning towards the Kymco Racing 150. From reading a thread or two on here, it sounds like a good performer. I like the slightly larger wheels than other small scooters, which must equate to more comfortable driving on longer trips.

I’m looking to buy used. Any tips on how much a good used one costs?

And any suggestions for alternative models? The Racing King 180 looks good, too, but is it worth the extra expense? (I understand it’s quite a bit heavier than the 150, does this cancel out any performance gains from the larger engine?).

Others that have caught my eye include SYM Fighter 150 and the Aeon OZ150, so any feedback on either of these (or others) would be good, too. The Yamaha S-Max looks lovely but I’m sure it’s expensive. I’m looking to spend around 50,000NT on a used scooter, less would be good, but I can also spend more if I really need to.

Thanks in advance for your help.

I have the Kymco Racing King 180, which I bought new a few months ago. I like it a lot. The 150 weighs 136kg, and the 180 weighs 139kg… only 3kg more. Acceleration, speed, and maneuverability are great. I was also looking at the Yamaha s-max, but decided against it as there’s less room to put things at your feet, and the indicator lights at the back look like they’d be too easily damaged.

When I think of 150cc I only know of the kymco racing 150cc and the aeon OZ 150cc and both aren’t small, a 150cc will do 70mph. In the states they are considered motorcycles and anything 150cc+ can be ridin on the expressways or freeways, also requiring a motorcycle license. Isn’t Asia different?

I think apart from a few like the s-max and pgo 220cc 150cc is about the biggest scooter size from factory in Taiwan.

The Aeon OZ 150cc has some cool leds similar to Audi. They ALMOST got it right but its still not a clean look, looks like 1 or 2 leds is out when actually 0 leds are out.
Also it has smaller wheels tires similar to a 100-125cc scooter.

Ok, Between the racing king 180cc, racing 150, and racing 150 FI.

The Racing king 180cc is cool because it has clean LEDs front and rear and even has a digital tach that switches over to MPH and miles… That’s Different!
But 28-30k/ltr not so good : ( It’s 70mph capable plenty enough power.

Racing King KCC Model 150cc A good scooter, bigger wheels then the OZ150cc, NO MPH, Miles Digital setting as above, No LEDs as above.
But 30-33k/ltr not great It’s 70mph capable plenty enough power.

Racing King FI (fuel injection) 150cc Basically the same as above but with fuel injection and a slight bigger price tag then the KCC.
36-38k/ltr The best so far It’s 70mph capable plenty enough power.

After considering all three I would go with the racing king FI 150cc, because all three are fast powerful and go 70mph plenty enough for me but…

only one has fuel injection=longer engine life and only one has fuel injection=better k/ltr

The OZ is to small for me and resembles the 100-125cc size despite being 150cc
The PGO GMAX 220CC FI gets 26-28k/ltr and has a horrible re-sale value in Taiwan.
The PGO 150cc with front mount radiator is a cool concept but still looks to bulky and has a bad resale value in Taiwan.
The Yamaha s-max is to big and grandpa-ish according to all the girls and I agree.

Funny thing, I was on my Ninja 250 in the mountains today, and a young guy on a Racing King 180 was pretty much keeping up with me all the way. That scooter sure seemed quick.

Then I came home and read your post … and now I’m seriously considering getting one. It’s a bit above my budget but I’m sure I can stretch :slight_smile:

Thanks for all the advice and info so far. That miles/kilometers switchable tach on the Racing King 180 sounds like an interesting gimmick … although fairly useless in Taiwan, I think!

I have a racing king 180 and would highly recommend them. Great passing power for a small scooter, even with my gf on the back. Double disks up front and and a disk at the back, cutouts in front of the floor so it’s possible to change your leg position a little (racing 150 doesn’t have this). Beautiful, bright digital display and a 12 volt outlet to charge your phone.

If you like to ride and want the convenience of a scooter they are great. Just wish they had a yellow plate model so I could ride on the expressways.

^ Thanks … the Racing King 180 sounds great, and despite the bigger-than-expected damage to my budget, I think that’s what I’ll be buying :slight_smile:

[quote=“2smokelvr”]When I think of 150cc I only know of the kymco racing 150cc and the aeon OZ 150cc and both aren’t small, a 150cc will do 70mph. In the states they are considered motorcycles and anything 150cc+ can be ridin on the expressways or freeways, also requiring a motorcycle license. Isn’t Asia different?


Taiwan is different. There is this silly fear (even among expats) of motorcycles on freeways. I wasn’t aware that 250cc (yellow plate) motorcycles/scooters were now allowed on expressways (June 2012). 150cc is not adequate for freeway use though. There are way too many crappy 150cc scooters that struggle to do 90km/hr and it would wreck the flow of traffic. I ended up on an expressway accidentally once and I was driving on the shoulder the whole time because traffic was going a fair amount faster.

If it were me and I had a nice motorcycle, a girlfriend that rarely used a scooter and an accessible electrical outlet then I would get an electric scooter for town use and plan on just using the motorcycle together outside of town.

^ Thank you for the suggestion. I have a bicycle for town use, in the cool season. And on longer trips I much prefer riding alone. While taking a passenger on the Ninja is generally OK, it’s a bit of a pain when descending hills because it has no grab handles and my passenger tends to slide forward into me the whole time. This puts a lot of strain on my hands/wrists on long drives.

Also, my girlfriend enjoys driving a scooter, so it will be more fun for both of us on longer trips. Plus a scooter is much more practical for shopping etc. than a motorcycle. And, I guess most importantly I want a Racing King 180 to liven up my own drives around town without having to get the Ninja out every time and worry about being driven into by idiots, having it scratched while parked, rain etc. etc.

Actually I believe my girlfriend (Jenna) is subbing some of your classes this afternoon, she’ll be cycling over there, but in future if she had a scooter it would be much quicker and easier for her to attend subbing gigs.

My suggestion was an electric scooter for town and for the girlfriend. But it’s tough to do that if you don’t have electrical access in your parking area. I have heard that you can carry the battery up to your apartment but that’s a PITA.

Despite being a little more cramped I prefer sharing a motorcycle with a girlfriend instead of separate scooters/motos. A car is even better but that is not a small expense.

Update: I bought a Racing King 180 at the weekend, a 2011 model in white with red and black trim. So far (after driving about 300km on it), I’m very impressed. It’s pretty much everything the posters above have said: fast, agile (it’s definitely in the “small scooter” category), and practical (there’s plenty of storage space under the seat).

It’s so comfortable, powerful, and effortless to drive, that I would go so far as to say it would be an ideal machine for touring Taiwan (except for the limitation of not being able to use the Expressways).

I’ve not done a head-to-head between the Racing King and my Ninja 250 yet, but I predict the scooter would have the edge from a standing start up to about 60km/h, and after that speed the Ninja would take over the lead.

I’ll post back with the results after I’ve tested my theory!

For me, it’d be one that I could get a manual for that wasn’t written as a mystery thriller.

Probably doesn’t exist, but if it does, it probably isn’t a Yamaha.


I’ve not done a head-to-head between the Racing King and my Ninja 250 yet, but I predict the scooter would have the edge from a standing start up to about 60km/h, and after that speed the Ninja would take over the lead.

I’ll post back with the results after I’ve tested my theory![/quote]

Of course, it is a 280cc scooter that is lighter with no gear shifting. Off the line it will be faster, but not in the long run. Your scooter will probably top out at 120-130 kph or less and the Ninja won’t.

It’s only 180cc and it has only just over half the power of the Ninja (17.5hp for the Racing King, compared to about 33hp for the Ninja). But yes, it’s lighter and not having to change gear saves a lot of time.

I haven’t tested its top speed, yet. It accelerates quickly up to about 90km/h, then noticeably more slowly after that. Fastest I’ve been so far is 110km/h. Surely it’s good for at least 120-130km/h. I’ll find out when I’m next on a long bridge somewhere.

It’s hard to resist the temptation to max the throttle every time I pull away from the traffic lights. It’s just so much fun leaving all the other scooters way behind … but not so good for fuel economy.

That was a typo, I meant 180cc. It will definitely beat the Ninja off the line. It will probably top out at 130 kph, I doubt any more than that.

I’ve had mine for just over a year now and it still puts a smile on my face. I took it around the island during Chinese New Year and it performed beautifully. Even loaded down with two people, a giant backpack resting on the floor, a normal-sized backpack and a seat full of camping gear it accelerated quickly up to 100 km/h up a big hill on the coastal road near Taidong.

Taiwan is scooter heaven. So many amazing roads that this scooter is perfect for. Drove the 199 out of Kenting for the first time…think I only saw about 10 other scooters and cars and this was during CNY! Also got to drive the 3 south of ChiaYi again, maybe my favorite road in Taiwan. It’s a tropical paradise of palm trees and colorful flowers/bushes.

I’m not sure if the previous owner told you or not (or if you read the manual) but you’re supposed to turn the key on and wait for the tach to come back to zero before starting it. There seems to be an oil primer pump or something and you can feel the vibration when you turn the key on. My friend has a racing 150 and I didn’t notice it with his. Anybody know what it is?

^ Thanks for the info about waiting for the tach to come back to zero before starting the engine … I didn’t know that.

I agree with you about Highway 3. It’s an awesome road all the way from Jiayi down as far as Qishan. When you’re next down south, you should also check out the 20 between Beiliao and Laonong, and the 182 between Neimen and Guanmiao :slight_smile:

By the way, the top speed of my Racing King 180 as tested yesterday … exactly 120km/h.

Cool, I’ll try to ride those roads when I can.

Also, if you have an earlier model check the length of the front mud guard. They were later replaced with a longer one because mud was clogging up the radiator. The shop should have replaced it for the previous owner but check just in case. I find the service at the newer KEN shops pretty good. The recommended oil is expensive though, 450 nt a liter. Adds up with their 1000 km recommended change interval.

Figured out all the key/seat open functions yet?! I think there are 3 ways to open the seat. It is nice to be able the seat while it is still running.

My previous scooter didn’t have a kill switch so that confused me at first too. A couple times I put my helmet on the mirror and accidentally hit the kill switch and then couldn’t figure out why it wouldn’t start. My friend who has the 150 did the same thing and had just starting towing it to the shop when he remembered my kill switch story.

^ Thanks for the tips. The front mudguard is pretty long, so I suspect it’s been changed, but I’ll make absolutely sure.

Regarding the oil, do you rely on the dashboard oil light to tell you when to change the oil? Or do you do it every 1,000km regardless?

None of my previous or current motorcycles have had such a sophisticated dashboard display, so I’m not sure whether to rely on the technology or just change the oil anyway whether the light comes on or not.

Funny you mention it, my oil light just came on tonight. It comes on every 1000 km and I change the oil pretty soon after that. I think you scroll to the third screen on the display and hold both buttons down to reset it but they always do it for me at the shop. Probably a good idea to go to one of the KEN shops as they will know how to best take care of it. They seem much more professional than the older style shops.

Hope it’s sunny tomorrow so I can take it for a ride.