US scooter craze

US discovering the chic, cheap appeal of the scooter
With gas prices at an all time high, the stylish two-wheelers are making inroads

[quote] “It’s kind of cool,” he said. “You’ll see a little group of them riding around together, and that feeds it.”

Small scooters, especially those made in China, Korea and Taiwan, sell for as little as US$800-US$900. Larger scooters, capable of legal highway speeds and more, can cost US$4,000 to US$6,000.

Scooters, while fun to drive, also can be dangerous. Other motorists often don’t notice the small two-wheelers, and that can land scooter drivers in the hospital – or the morgue.

Inexperienced and young scooter drivers should be especially careful, Petersen says.

“I see a lot of people driving scooters with shorts, flip flops, no helmet, two-up on a machine that shouldn’t ride two people,” he says. [/quote]

They’ve never been in Taiwan I guess, here a whole flip-flop family without helmets fits on a scooter :laughing:

http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/bizfocus/archives/2005/08/28/2003269515

In most places in the States having a scooter is useless, like Chicago, where you can get about 4 months of good weather for driving one.

Besides, the way American’s shop, there’s not a lot of room on them for all the crap they by at the local 24 SuperWalmart. :laughing:

[quote=“Namahottie”]In most places in the States having a scooter is useless, like Chicago, where you can get about 4 months of good weather for driving one.[/quote]Scooters give more weather protection than a lot of motorbikes. They are popular now in rainy Britain. (Well, the Vespas and Lambrettas have had a cult following for decades, but now a lot of people are getting into the automatic “twist-and-go” models).

Since arriving in Taiwan and becoming a 'scooter rider, I have done quite a bit of research about scooters.

It seems that there is a quite large, relatively speaking, and devoted motorscooter community (underground?) in the US.
Concentrated mostly around the larger cities; it also exists in some of the university areas.
This came about as devotees of Vespas and Piaggios and a few other ‘old school’ motorscooter riders needed to find parts and service for their rides. Now its quite a burgeoning business.

KYMCO and a few more of the names familiar here on Taiwan are repreented in the US. Along with Honda, Suzuki and Yamaha now marketing their larger version of 'scooter-type rides. 250 - 400- 500cc in sizes.

As a side-note. I have contacted a KYMCO dealer in southern california about english language manuals for my 'scooter. He doesn’t have it - refers me to England dealers. They don’t have my model either…so far.

[quote=“TainanCowboy”]It seems that there is a quite large, relatively speaking, and devoted motorscooter community (underground?) in the US.
Concentrated mostly around the larger cities; it also exists in some of the university areas.
This came about as devotees of Vespas and Piaggios and a few other ‘old school’ motorscooter riders needed to find parts and service for their rides. Now its quite a burgeoning business.[/quote]Interesting. But in the UK, there seems to be somewhat of a divide between the Vespa/Lambretta devotees and the new breed of automatic scooter riders. The original scooterists were the Mods. It’s something to do with that.

[quote=“joesax”]Interesting. But in the UK, there seems to be somewhat of a divide between the Vespa/Lambretta devotees and the new breed of automatic scooter riders. The original scooterists were the Mods. It’s something to do with that.[/quote]Joesax -
I have observed a lot of the same ‘clannishness’ on some of the us 'scooter forums…lol.
Metals vs plastics / autos vs shifters…lol

But all are benefitting with the surge in 'scooter popularity in the US.

Weather protection in Chicago? We don’t get rain in the winter. We get snow, and when it snows in Chicago,it aint no joke.

Funny becuase I called a friend back home in NZ this weekend, and she said that scooters are getting popular there now too.

Brian

Shoite! Look at the one at the back in that pic – the red one with a sidecar! I’d pay good money for one of those.