Vespa PX 150 Review
The Vespa PX 150 offers a truly unique riding experience. At a little over 34 years old, the PX proves age is no barrier.
The Vespa PX has sold over 3 million units worldwide, yes the PX is over 34 years old. Piaggio did try and drop the axe, though it was soon realised the public still needed a manual shift - 2 stroke scooter. The automatic Vespa range of "twist and go" models just couldn't replicate the in-built heritage. So, the PX 150 returns and slots back into the Vespa line-up.
For those that don't know, the PX is a manual geared scooter. Always has been, always will be. The selection of gears is made via the "twist grip" on the left hand bar. You have 4 speeds in total to select. You select gears pretty much by matching the dot with the number. The cable activated clutch lever sits on the same side and you work this just like you would any motorcycle. So clutch in, select first, manipulate the clutch out, away you go.
Remember with the PX, simplicity is the key principle here. The PX can trace its origins back to where the whole thing started. The PX features a one piece metal body, a 2 stroke engine on one side, a spare tyre that gets bolted on the other. An all metal glove box, basic gauges, oil site-glass, a manual choke. This is vintage living and PX enthusiasts wouldn't have it any other way.
Tyres are 10 inch in size on traditional split rims. Anything larger would be unconventional and not fitting with history. The front link arm suspension is something that goes hand-in-hand with the Vespa brand. A conventional disc brake on the front, the rear makes do with a foot operated drum.
The PX 150 comes in at 150 cc in capacity. The PX is 2 stroke, so think 2 stroke buzz, 2 stroke oil, the smell of 2 stroke fumes. Very rare in this day and age with European standards that tend to be strangling this form of engine design. The PX in this emission beating form still manages a credible 6.6 Kw. The PX weighing in at 112 Kg.
Mention should be made of the small changes that have made there way onto this latest 150 version. The new Vespa embossed handgrips, the new seat, the front horn cover have all been revised. Quality also looks to be a step-up over the previous 200 model.
On The Road
On the road the PX is all vintage. My ride is normally based around the convenience of automatic "twist and go" scooters. And it was only after a few rides before me and the PX truly clicked. A few rides before I gained a sense of balance and smoothness you need to enjoy the PX.
With the PX don't rush gear changes, ride the torque curve of the 2 stroke engine, don't over-rev the engine. The PX is best ridden with a sense of care-free freedom. Take it easy, relax and enjoy the ride.
The PX 150 will cruise along happily with the surrounding traffic. You flow along, select the best gear that has the PX in the sweet spot. You shouldn't have to change up and down through the gears, unless that is you come to a steep incline. Hills will have you changing down pretty quickly.
Handling is another thing you need to consider. Hitting potholes or speedbumps can be unsettling at first, especially if you're carrying speed. This is partly due to the 10 inch wheel and partly because of the engine hanging off one side. This is PX ownership, once you get accustomed things roll along nicely. The PX is actually pretty agile and steering the PX through corners can be a shed-load of fun.
The best way I can describe the PX. This is a scooter that makes you think and feel. Think about what gear you're in at the time, how you'll take that upcoming corner. Feel in the way that you learn the sweet spots, the shifting of gears, the feel of the 2 stroke motor through the frame. Once you get everything right you'll have a riding experience like no other scooter can provide. I remember after a few rides and everything just coming naturally, thinking to myself, yes I get this now. Big smiles followed and it becomes a real rewarding experience.....
The PX 150 is a totally different way to enjoy the pleasures of scootering. The PX takes a different road compared to that of the simple nature of "twist and go" commuting. It will connect you to the roots like no other scooter can. It's an icon, a scooter that will evoke emotion.
With the pressure to meet Europe's ever increasing emissions targets it will be hard for the PX to live life just as it has for over 34 years. Which will be a real shame when the day comes. The PX is unique, different, special, feelings you just don't get from any other form of two wheeled transport. And if you like to fiddle, the PX is king of the aftermarket.
The PX is available in four colour options, Red, White, Blue and Black. The PX is available throughout the Vespa network and retails at $5990 + On Road Costs.