Vespa PX 150 – Road Test

What is it?

It’s the long-awaited return of a legend. Manufacturing of the PX 150 ceased in 2008 and 2011 saw the return of the Vespa family’s best-seller. New and improved, it is the same ride and experience as the PX of old, only better. The engine is still a two-stroke, but the new design, with a separate oil administering tube, mixes the oil and petrol. This means less exhaust smoke and less noise.

Engine/drivetrain

The 150 cc engine has enough power to move a rider and passenger with ease in and around the city. The clutch has been improved and each shift, although still not slick, is easier than before.

Blue Vespa PX150 from front, left

Style, instruments and equipment

The new PX features electric start, but there’s a kick-starter for die-hard Vespa lovers or in case of battery problems. A hydraulic steel disc front brake is a major safety upgrade. Vespa remained true to the classic design and the little stallion is as stylish as ever. A slightly glittering paint coating also makes the new PX look like the brand spanking new creature it is. The vinyl seat is beautifully stylish and bigger than before, which makes two-up riding easy.

Performance

The new PX has more power than before and with a top speed of 87 km/h it overtakes a hesitant motorist with no effort. It is a super convenient way of getting from one end of the city to the other without traffic frustration. The improved engine conforms to the Euro-3 carbon-emission standard.

If you want to go touring or undertake city-to-city trips you should opt for the more powerful, four-stroke Vespa GTS 300, with its twist-n-go throttle.

Blue Vespa PX 150 in profile

Ride and handling

Even though the new-and-improved version of the PX is a smoother ride its still rather bumpy. Should you venture out of the city and onto bigger roads, you’ll find the PX can be a little wobbly at times and if you add a strong wind to the mix, the riding experience becomes a little hair-raising.

The Vespa is a city creature and only in the city does it really come into its own. Weaving in traffic (Traffic? What traffic?) and riding up and down narrow alleys and side streets, that’s when the PX works likes a charm. Those seeking an alternative, cheap mode of transport will find the miniscule fuel consumption of the PX a bonus but the price (R54 950) still puts it out of reach of most budget-conscious commuters.

Blue Vespa PX 150 from rear, side

Likes/dislikes

Likes – The style and convenience

Dislike – The price

Verdict and rating

It’s a smooth, sleek, stylish ride when confined to the city limits. A Chinese, Taiwanese or Japanese scooter would be much, much cheaper, but lacks the charm, heritage, solid build and safe steel frame of a Vespa. Rating: 7

Also consider: Kymco Agility 125, Yamaha T-Max, Vespa GTS 300, Vespa S 125

Vespa PX 150 from the front, right

Specifications of the Vespa PX 150 (2012)

  • Engine  150 cc, two-stroke, air-cooled, single cylinder.
  • Gearbox  4-speed, belt drive.
  • Power  6.6 kW
  • Torque  12 Nm
  • Weight (dry)  97 kg
  • Brakes  Hydraulic front disc brake, rear drum brake.
  • Seat height  810 mm
  • Fuel capacity  8 litres
  • Fuel consumption  3.55 litres/100 km
  • Tank range  225 km
  • Warranty and servicing  One year unlimited km; service every 6 000 km
  • Price  R 54 950
  • Review by  Olga van Zyl, November 2011

More info at www.vespa.co.za

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