Besides just being the cutest means of transportation on the Planet Earth, the Vespa Piaggio is now planning to introduce fuel-injection technology across its entire model range in the near future. Currently, the Vespa scooters get an old-school carburetor. With a carburator a Vespa (depending on the size of the engine) should get between 60 and 90 miles per gallon! With fuel injection, it can only get better. And depending on the model, you can go Slow Italy style at a top speed of 40 mph, or if you're more the Ferrari type, up to 80 mph on the larger models.
Here's a sampling of Vespa models and what they'll set you back...
A Brief History of Vespa
The first Vespa scooter was produced in 1946 by Enrico Piaggio. Inspired by the Cushman scooters used by the American military during WWII, designer Corradino D'Ascanio first produced a scooter design for Ferdinando Innocenti (Lambretta), but after a disagreement, took his design to Enrico Piaggio, an aircraft manufacturer. Vespa, meaning "wasp" in Italian, was attributed to Piaggio's first sight of the design, exclaiming that it looked like a wasp. Production started in December 1946.
But if you want a genuine feel-good reason to get a Vespa, check out the collaboration between Piaggio Group and (RED)®, which has created Euro 4 VESPA 946-RED, a Vespa clad in shiny red, designed to benefit the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, promoted by the organization founded in 2006 by Bono and Bobby Shriver. For every VESPA 946-RED purchased, $150 will go to the Global Fund to fight AIDS with (RED)®, which can provide more than 500 days of lifesaving HIV medication to help prevent a mother living with HIV from passing the virus to her unborn baby. Forget chic.... this is just plain solid! And how's a 90+ mph top speed and
The Vespa also joined with fashion guru Giorgio Armani to produce a version of the 946 called the Emporio Armani, but when I weigh whether I'd rather have some of my cash go into Armani's very full pockets or toward helping the helpless of the world... well, there's only once choice. What goes around comes around, you know?