Looking for a 150cc scooter [solved]

VirumVirum Registered User regular
edited March 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
The search button doesn't work for me on any of my browsers, so I am compelled to make a new thread.

I have my eye on a brand new 2009 Pliaggio Fly 150 which can be had at a local dealership for $2300 with a free $300 helmet special that Pliaggio has going on until the end of April. This is of course before any fees and such, but it looks like I can walk out at $3,000, and that's before haggling. I'd like it better if the price were closer to $2500, but I think I could possibly manage that.

The only thing I've seen cheaper is the so-called Chinese "crap" like the Fly Scooters Il Bello.

At the moment, I do not feel comfortable buying this scooter - I want a quality product and I have found in the past that buying cheap means buying twice.

However, I am open to any suggestions. What I really want is:

1) 70mpg +
2) Storage space for at least a full face helmet, mounting places for more.
3) Freeway capable, but 98% of the time I will be on urban streets so I don't need a larger engine.
4) Less than $3000 MSRP, but I would really like to walk away only $2500 lighter if I can.

Is there any other scooter I should look at?

Also, is it bad on your credit score to negotiate financing and then pay it off completely on your first payment? I am wondering if I should use this opportunity to build some loan credit.

Virum on

Posts

  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Some advice from someone whose been riding scooters for 10+ years...

    Stay the fuck off the freeway with them. It is dangerous as dangerous can get. I know you only said capable, but don't even think about it.

    Now, I don't know much about the newer bikes (I've only owned late 60s and earlier but I have ridden the newer Vespas) but Piaggio is a good brand. The Il Bellos are just fine for around town, but I'm sure not as well made. As for helmet storage you'll probably need to buy an attachable helmet case.

    And no, it's not bad to pay it off like that. I don't know if it helps anything, but it's not bad.

    Esh on
  • VirumVirum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I just need to hop on the freeway for 3 miles or so to get to another town, its the only connecting road... I'd do this maybe three times a year max.

    Also I have a big hill to climb on a 40 mph road so the larger engine is needed for that as well.

    Supposedly the fly 150 fits a full face helmet under the seat, though some say it is too small as well.

    Virum on
  • khainkhain Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    You may not be able to pay off a car loan immediately so if you plan on doing that make sure you check the fine print.

    khain on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I'm in Illinois, so maybe its different in other areas, but here you've gotta have at least 250cc's to legally go on a highway. Like Esh said though, stay the hell away from freeways with a scooter.

    I honestly think that anyone who's considering a scooter would be better off with a small motorcycle instead. The wheels on scooters are just too small and have a way of getting stuck in cracks in the street. A guy at work took one into a pothole about a year ago and went face first into a curb.

    MushroomStick on
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I'm in Illinois, so maybe its different in other areas, but here you've gotta have at least 250cc's to legally go on a highway. Like Esh said though, stay the hell away from freeways with a scooter.

    I honestly think that anyone who's considering a scooter would be better off with a small motorcycle instead. The wheels on scooters are just too small and have a way of getting stuck in cracks in the street. A guy at work took one into a pothole about a year ago and went face first into a curb.

    Imagine this. On a freeway. At 60mph. You will be road paste. Also, a passing large truck in windy conditions will blow you the fuck over. A lot can happen in three miles. As well, motorists have a hard enough time noticing motorcycles, imagine being on something smaller than that.

    EDIT: Buy a mid 70s 500cc Honda or something. Or go smaller (CC wise) if you want. A LOT cheaper, you can work on it yourself, and actually halfway safe on a freeway.

    Esh on
  • VirumVirum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Points taken...

    MushroomStick: any suggestions for a real motorcycle that fits what I'm looking for MPG wise? Since I don't need freeway access often at all I may stick with the scooter, and just use public transportation for the longer trip that requires the freeway.

    Virum on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Virum wrote: »
    Points taken...

    MushroomStick: any suggestions for a real motorcycle that fits what I'm looking for MPG wise? Since I don't need freeway access often at all I may stick with the scooter, and just use public transportation for the longer trip that requires the freeway.

    A 250 ninja wont quite get the 70mpg you're looking for, but it'll do 50mpg. And if you were to go for a 2008 or so model year, you might even be able to hit your budget goal.

    MushroomStick on
  • VirumVirum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Liking the look of this!

    Kawasaki Eliminator

    Do you think this is a better idea than a scooter?

    Virum on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Virum wrote: »
    Liking the look of this!

    Kawasaki Eliminator

    Do you think this is a better idea than a scooter?

    Its not street legal, at least not everywhere. You need to have at least 250cc's.

    MushroomStick on
  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2011
    Are there seriously countries where its legal to ride a scooter on the freeway?

    Don't ride scooters on freeways. You will be eaten by a truck. Or possibly a Landrover full of well-off children, driven by a small, highly-strung lady in large sunglasses. That's an embarrassing way to die.

    I assume you've thought about the need to carry things besides yourself on this vehicle and the possibility of inclement weather, etc etc, so I'll stick to saying that a lot of loans have penalties for paying things off too early. My three-year car loan, for example, had a clause charging me a few hundred for paying it off before 12 months were up. It was just slightly more money than I'd have saved in interest, so you know. Its only fair to let a lender make a little money off you, but don't sign anything that actually properly penalises you for paying a reasonable amount over what's required.

    The Cat on
    tmsig.jpg
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Virum wrote: »
    Liking the look of this!

    Kawasaki Eliminator

    Do you think this is a better idea than a scooter?

    Its not street legal, at least not everywhere. You need to have at least 250cc's.

    Do you mean "not freeway legal"? I know of lots of street legal 50cc bikes.

    Esh on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Virum wrote: »
    Liking the look of this!

    Kawasaki Eliminator

    Do you think this is a better idea than a scooter?

    Its not street legal, at least not everywhere. You need to have at least 250cc's.

    Do you mean "not freeway legal"? I know of lots of street legal 50cc bikes.

    That's going to vary from area to area. Where I live, a suburb of Chicago, those 50cc things aren't even allowed on the sidewalk. There was a big deal about them back a few years when everywhere started selling all those minichoppers/mopeds/etc. and then everywhere around here at least passed laws that made it illegal to run them anywhere. I remember when all the autoparts stores were obligated to post signs next to their displays warning people that if they bought the things they wouldn't be able to ride them past their driveways. They couldn't give the things away after that.

    That's why I recommend at least a 250, then you don't have to worry about local ordinances.

    MushroomStick on
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Virum wrote: »
    Liking the look of this!

    Kawasaki Eliminator

    Do you think this is a better idea than a scooter?

    Its not street legal, at least not everywhere. You need to have at least 250cc's.

    Do you mean "not freeway legal"? I know of lots of street legal 50cc bikes.

    That's going to vary from area to area. Where I live, a suburb of Chicago, those 50cc things aren't even allowed on the sidewalk. There was a big deal about them back a few years when everywhere started selling all those minichoppers/mopeds/etc. and then everywhere around here at least passed laws that made it illegal to run them anywhere. I remember when all the autoparts stores were obligated to post signs next to their displays warning people that if they bought the things they wouldn't be able to ride them past their driveways. They couldn't give the things away after that.

    That's why I recommend at least a 250, then you don't have to worry about local ordinances.

    Those little things are 50cc? Can you show me some proof of that? I don't think they are. Also, those little "micro choppers/crotchrockets/etc." are not mopeds.

    For instance, this is a 50cc Vespa and is entirely street legal. Even in Chicago. There's a HUGE scooter scene there and I know these are part of it. How also do you explain mopeds and their street legality? Or these brand new 50cc Vespas which are also street legal. For a very long time most scooters topped out at 200cc which is fairly capable of doing 75mph. So why you keep saying 250cc I'm not sure.

    Esh on
  • adytumadytum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    What Esh said. It's common for vehicles with engines less than 50ccs (which is why when you look at the specs they're all actually 49.5cc engines) to be treated similar to bicycles. You can ride them on sidewalks (in some places), park them anywhere bicycles can be parked, etc. You don't normally need a license, though of course various jurisdictions have different laws. Some, for instance, base the licensing requirement on the top speed rather than the engine size, as 49.5cc engines can still go quite fast. In any case, they're pretty much street legal everywhere.

    Minibikes are a different beast completely, and it's not the engine size that's the problem, it's the (among other things) seat height and lack of safety equipment that keep them from being road legal.

    adytum on
    etxvv5.jpg
  • adytumadytum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Oh, and I should mention..

    Take a look at the Sachs MadAss. I've been wanting to buy one for years. It's a 125cc 'motorcycle' in that it's built like a standard bike, and has larger wheels. It has a good seating position, good fuel efficiency, and won't be eaten by a pothole.

    Check here, or here, other places on the internet. It's around $2,500 including shipping. Unfortunately they don't seem to offer the 50cc version in the US anymore.

    You don't need the $300 helmet that the dealership is offering as an incentive. Keep an eye out on motorcycle stores and you can pick up a solid mid-tier helmet for less than $100.

    adytum on
    etxvv5.jpg
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    MushroomStick on
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    Why do you think anything smaller than a 250 is dangerous? The size of the bike pretty much stays the same from a 50 up to a 300. People have been riding them all over Europe for 50 something years.

    Esh on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    Why do you think anything smaller than a 250 is dangerous? The size of the bike pretty much stays the same from a 50 up to a 300. People have been riding them all over Europe for 50 something years.

    I don't trust anything smaller to be able to accelerate out of trouble, should the need arise. When that kid who was texting rearends you with their mom's suv its not going to be, "Oops. The insurance'll cover it." like it would be when you're in a car. Granted, merely having more horsepower wouldn't guarantee safety in such a situation, but it at least makes me feel like I've got more options. The United States isn't as bike friendly as Europe.

    MushroomStick on
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    Why do you think anything smaller than a 250 is dangerous? The size of the bike pretty much stays the same from a 50 up to a 300. People have been riding them all over Europe for 50 something years.

    I don't trust anything smaller to be able to accelerate out of trouble, should the need arise. When that kid who was texting rearends you with their mom's suv its not going to be, "Oops. The insurance'll cover it." like it would be when you're in a car. Granted, merely having more horsepower wouldn't guarantee safety in such a situation, but it at least makes me feel like I've got more options. The United States isn't as bike friendly as Europe.

    You've never been on a scooter before have you? The acceleration on them is pretty ridiculous. My '58 Allstate (a 125cc) with just an upgraded exhaust was pretty fucking fast off the line.

    Esh on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Esh wrote: »
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    Why do you think anything smaller than a 250 is dangerous? The size of the bike pretty much stays the same from a 50 up to a 300. People have been riding them all over Europe for 50 something years.

    I don't trust anything smaller to be able to accelerate out of trouble, should the need arise. When that kid who was texting rearends you with their mom's suv its not going to be, "Oops. The insurance'll cover it." like it would be when you're in a car. Granted, merely having more horsepower wouldn't guarantee safety in such a situation, but it at least makes me feel like I've got more options. The United States isn't as bike friendly as Europe.

    You've never been on a scooter before have you? The acceleration on them is pretty ridiculous. My '58 Allstate (a 125cc) with just an upgraded exhaust was pretty fucking fast off the line.

    I was under the impression that we were talking about small motorcycles at this point. I admit that I've never ridden a scooter. The smaller ones are banned in my immediate community and even if they weren't, the roads here are not kept up well enough for the tiny tires. My first post in this thread alludes to a story about a guy at work that got the front tire on a scooter stuck in a pothole and went forehead first into a curb.

    MushroomStick on
  • soxboxsoxbox Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Scooter owner here - If you're looking for a cheap reliable scooter, go for SYM. Taiwanese brand - the don't have the styling of a Piaggo or a Vespa, but they're much better than the 'chinese crap' without paying the premium you get on the european models.

    If you want to be freeway capable, you need a 200+ cc model. The larger scooters have larger wheels and are more comparable to a touring bike than the little 50cc scooters. I know a guy who regularly rides over an hour on 110km/h roads at night on his 250cc scooter with no troubles whatsoever.

    A 50cc scooter can handle slower moving city traffic, a 100cc handles 60km/h comfortably and can just barely manage an 80km/h road. 200cc is the minimum at where I'd say it's 'freeway capable', but 250cc is what you want if you're actually going to be going 90+km/h for any period of time.

    Prices in australia are too different for me to know with any surety, but I'm pretty sure if you're spending less than $3000 on a scooter you're not going to be getting more than 150cc without going very very budget, so it's best to forget about highways or look at motorbikes instead.

    I currently own a 100cc SYM Mio that I usually use for getting to the city and back (on 60km/h or slower roads) or occasionally for a 40min ride to work if my gf needs the car (mainly on 60km/h with a short stretch of 80km/h).

    soxbox on
  • BarrakkethBarrakketh Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Virum wrote: »
    Points taken...

    MushroomStick: any suggestions for a real motorcycle that fits what I'm looking for MPG wise? Since I don't need freeway access often at all I may stick with the scooter, and just use public transportation for the longer trip that requires the freeway.

    A 250 ninja wont quite get the 70mpg you're looking for, but it'll do 50mpg. And if you were to go for a 2008 or so model year, you might even be able to hit your budget goal.
    The 250R will do 55-70 MPG depending on your speed and riding style. Even the Versys (650cc) will get 50-55 MPG.

    Barrakketh on
    Rollers are red, chargers are blue....omae wa mou shindeiru
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    soxbox wrote: »
    Scooter owner here - If you're looking for a cheap reliable scooter, go for SYM. Taiwanese brand - the don't have the styling of a Piaggo or a Vespa, but they're much better than the 'chinese crap' without paying the premium you get on the european models.

    If you want to be freeway capable, you need a 200+ cc model. The larger scooters have larger wheels and are more comparable to a touring bike than the little 50cc scooters. I know a guy who regularly rides over an hour on 110km/h roads at night on his 250cc scooter with no troubles whatsoever.

    A 50cc scooter can handle slower moving city traffic, a 100cc handles 60km/h comfortably and can just barely manage an 80km/h road. 200cc is the minimum at where I'd say it's 'freeway capable', but 250cc is what you want if you're actually going to be going 90+km/h for any period of time.

    Prices in australia are too different for me to know with any surety, but I'm pretty sure if you're spending less than $3000 on a scooter you're not going to be getting more than 150cc without going very very budget, so it's best to forget about highways or look at motorbikes instead.

    I currently own a 100cc SYM Mio that I usually use for getting to the city and back (on 60km/h or slower roads) or occasionally for a 40min ride to work if my gf needs the car (mainly on 60km/h with a short stretch of 80km/h).

    The point is not that it's capable or not of going on the freeway, it's that it's extremely dangerous to the inexperienced rider (and the experienced). Even my friends who have been riding for longer than me are extremely hesitant to take their scooters on the freeway.

    Esh on
  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I can't believe we've gotten this far into the thread without suggesting that the OP take an MSF course.

    So, yeah. Virum, you should try and get into an MSF course. They'll teach you to ride, you'll be able to see if riding is for you before you buy anything, and the instructors will probably be able to give advice specific to your location about all the junk the rest of us have been going back and forth over.

    MushroomStick on
  • soxboxsoxbox Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I can't believe we've gotten this far into the thread without suggesting that the OP take an MSF course.

    Oh this. Limed so hard. I forget that other places in the world let you ride scooters and motorbikes without a training course. Especially if you're considering riding at anywhere at highway speed. If you're learning how to swerve in road conditions, you're going to want to have some good health insurance.

    soxbox on
  • VirumVirum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Yes, I was already planning on taking an MSF course or two. I do not want to kill myself and I plan on taking advanced courses as I continue riding.

    I have decided not to get a scooter and will either get a used Ninja 250 or Honda's new entry.

    I think we are pretty much done here, thanks!

    Virum on
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Virum wrote: »
    Yes, I was already planning on taking an MSF course or two. I do not want to kill myself and I plan on taking advanced courses as I continue riding.

    I have decided not to get a scooter and will either get a used Ninja 250 or Honda's new entry.

    I think we are pretty much done here, thanks!

    A much better choice, all things considered. Have fun and ride safe!

    Esh on
  • ZeonZeon Registered User
    edited March 2011
    Esh wrote: »
    Esh wrote: »
    I live in a suburb of Chicago, not the actual city. Several small displacement vehicles have been outlawed in the suburbs. I think it had something to do with kids getting hurt on them. A while back, it was pretty common for auto part stores around here to sell micro choppers, pocket rockets, crappy dirt bikes, and yes, mopeds. They have all since been outlawed in public roads/places, in my and some surrounding neighborhoods. Some of the auto part stores even went out of business over this.

    Perhaps my area is the exception rather than the norm, but the OP should probably still check out his local ordinances, just in case. I keep saying 250cc because way back when I took an msf course, they told us that was smallest displacement engine you could legally ride everywhere.


    Edit: I got bored and did a little googling and found out that in 2002 some kid ate shit on a scooter, so a bunch of the towns around here banned them. I still think its dangerous to ride anything smaller than a 250, but it looks like my argument about the legality is an issue local to my area.

    Why do you think anything smaller than a 250 is dangerous? The size of the bike pretty much stays the same from a 50 up to a 300. People have been riding them all over Europe for 50 something years.

    I don't trust anything smaller to be able to accelerate out of trouble, should the need arise. When that kid who was texting rearends you with their mom's suv its not going to be, "Oops. The insurance'll cover it." like it would be when you're in a car. Granted, merely having more horsepower wouldn't guarantee safety in such a situation, but it at least makes me feel like I've got more options. The United States isn't as bike friendly as Europe.

    You've never been on a scooter before have you? The acceleration on them is pretty ridiculous. My '58 Allstate (a 125cc) with just an upgraded exhaust was pretty fucking fast off the line.

    I was under the impression that we were talking about small motorcycles at this point. I admit that I've never ridden a scooter. The smaller ones are banned in my immediate community and even if they weren't, the roads here are not kept up well enough for the tiny tires. My first post in this thread alludes to a story about a guy at work that got the front tire on a scooter stuck in a pothole and went forehead first into a curb.

    Theres no way scooters are banned in chicago. There was mods and rockers last summer and there was tons and tons of those stupid little 50cc rebels everywhere (the little metal frame things with the steampunk-ish headlamp, not the honda rebel, which is also a 50cc scooter, as is the jazz, and both are completely street legal). Also, a 50cc 2-stroke will haul. Theres no safety issue at all riding one on a normal street up to a speed limit of about 40mph. Youre thinking of pocket bikes and mini-bikes, which as esh said, are banned almost everywhere for other reasons, such as lack of lighting and riding position.

    As to the OP, id look into something like a vintage vespa if you can get a good price on one, and also if it isnt "rebuilt" from china or some other asian country (they generally come back over here held together with bondo. Not cool when your frame snaps in two at 30mph). Little 2 stroke engines that you can tear down and rebuild in about an hour with a 10 dollar socket set. They get about 70 or 80 mpg and parts are plentiful. Or you can get an actual small cc vintage motorcycle, there were lots of them made by all the japanese manufacturers from the 60s to the 80s. Anything in the Honda CB series is a decent bike, from the CB100s right up to the CB360 (anything bigger and it might be too much to handle as a first bike). Yamaha also made some nice small CC 2 strokes (RD250, 350 and 450) but those bikes are a handful to ride because they have a lot of power. Id stay away from kawasakis though if youre shopping vintage, just too many hassles with them.

    If youre looking for a new scooter though, cycleworld always does a review of the new models around this time, so it would be worth checking their website to see what they have to say. The Piaggios are decent though if you do decide to go that route. I dont know if id pay 3000 bucks, but i wouldnt feel like i got ripped off if i did. Keep in mind if you buy new, you will NOT have much wiggle room, maybe 100 bucks or taxes included, something like that. Buying a bike or scooter isnt like a car, the margins are razor thin as is. Haggling usually consists of something like getting a free helmet or a jacket or some oil changes thrown in. Unless the dealer is desperate (which a piaggio dealer probably wont be) you wont be saving 500 bucks. I would look online to find a the scooter you want thats been used for a season with low kilometers. This is a great time to look for a bike because you'll have the people looking to sell who started riding last year, put 100km on their scooter and decided it wasnt for them. You can get basically a brand new bike for probably 1000 bucks off the sticker price.

    And the last bit of advice, if youve never been on a bike, take a safety course no matter what you do. There are lots of little things that make riding a motorcycle or a scooter different from driving a car (you need to be much more aware) and even different from riding a bicycle. And dont take a scooter on the highway. I mean, if youve got a 350cc+ scooter and 16+ inch wheels, it will be ok. Anything smaller, either wheel size or engine size, it wouldnt be safe. You'll end up either getting blown over by a transport or you'll end up getting stuck in a tar snake and pulled all over the place. Neither is fun.

    *edit* whoops, missed the OP's last post. As big a fan of honda as i am (5 honda cars and 3 honda bikes... ) I would personally stay away from the new CBR250s. Theyre overpriced and not that much fun with the relatively "low" redline (due to the giant single cylinder). The CBR125 is a better choice because its cheaper and lighter and a lot more fun, but i dont think you have them in the US. The Ninja is a solid bike, and if youre mechanically inclined at all you can make them sing (the carbs are jetted extremely lean from the factory). Plus you can probably get a really good deal on a used one. The CBR250 is brand new this year over here, so dealers are your only option. As a first bike, i would highly recommend going used, for 2 reasons. If you dont like it, you wont really lose money reselling it. Second, you will probably drop it at least once. Its a fact of life for new riders. If you drop your brand new bike with brand new plastics and scratch it all up, you will be incredibly sad and feel compelled to pay the ridiculous prices for new plastics to get it fixed. If you buy a used bike with a few scratches on it already, anything ontop of that is just battle scars.

    Zeon on
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  • NPNP Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    -You really can't go wrong with a Ninja 250

    -"Prepayment Penalty" is what you should look out for when signing a loan, that basically means you're gonna have to pay the full interest on the length of the loan even if it hasn't accrued yet. You can get a loan without it, but read the fine print. If you're buying a used bike you probably don't need to worry about it.

    NP on
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