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Vespa LX 125 first look

2nd Apr 2012 7:55 pm

Vespa LX 125 launches later this month.

The Vespa brand enjoys a history in India, as erstwhile collaborators with LML making geared scooters that were popular at one time. Like all good things however, the LML JV was dismantled in 1999, Piaggio having setting up a spanking new manufacturing unit at Baramati in 2007.

Piaggios first scooter here, the LX 125 is set to launch on schedule later this month. The Vespa LX 125 is an automatic, retro looking scooter, paying tribute to the original 1946 Vespa with retro styling. It’s a compact vehicle, with plenty of rounded curves and a cute, headlamp, flanked by chrome rear-view mirrors. The front apron sports a centre cowl, reminding of scooters from the past, apart from a chrome grille that houses the horn and a set of tall, rectangular indicators. A curvy front mudguard guards the front suspension and multi-spoke alloy wheel.

See detailed images of the Vespa LX 125 here

The LX employs a rounded instruments cluster with a speedometer, fuel gauge, tell-tale lights and a digital clock. Switchgear is modern, including a set of push-to-cancel indicators. Inside the apron sits a petite glove box, capable of gobbling up a few knick-knacks. There’s a ridged footboard below. The seat is wide. A large lockable under-seat storage bay is present. Behind the seat sits a functional grab handle, while the LX 125 rear end is smartly contoured, retro but simple with an edgy stop lamp and turn indicators. Fit-finish and quality on the scooters to leave Baramati remains a question mark till we get to test one thoroughly.

The LX 125 for India deploys a 125cc, four-stroke, carbureted, air-cooled single cylinder engine. 125cc is a favourite displacement for Vespas, the famous firm having often given their vehicles similar capacity engines over six decades. Peak power output is 10.06bhp at 7500rpm, while maximum torque produced at 6000rpm is 1.08kgm. An automatic CVT transmission coupled with decent power and torque should endure the LX 125 with ample performance and convenience in Indian traffic conditions.

The scooter uses a monocoque type steel chassis. Front suspension is a single-side, linked arm with hydraulic shock absorber and coil spring, while at rear sits a hydraulic monoshock. The LX 125 uses a 150mm drum brake in the front, with a 140mm drum behind.

Pricing is yet to be announced, and shall be key to the LX 125’s success in India. Indications point at premium positioning, so expect the LX 125 to cost a bit more than its competition. Has the Indian scooter market evolved enough to accept a premium scooter like this? Are Indians prepared to shell out the extra bucks required to make lifestyle statements aboard scooters?

Time and the Autocar India road test will tell the truth.

See detailed images of the Vespa LX 125 here

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