Iconic Italian manufacturer, Vespa celebrated its 75th anniversary on April 22, 2021, which also happened to Earth Day.
Iconic Italian scooter maker completes 75 years
Vespa production began in 1946 in Italy
It is currently sold in 83 countries
Vespa: 75 year anniversary milestone
Vespa began operations in 1946 at the Pontedera plant in Italy, which also happened to log another milestone on Vespa's 75th anniversary. The plant rolled out the 19 millionth Vespa scooter – a GTS 300. The landmark Vespa was finished in the celebratory 75th Anniversary Special Edition scheme.
Vespa: the journey so far
Vespa is currently sold in 83 countries, spanning every continent in the world. Halfway through the first decade of the new millennia, annual Vespa production was around 50,000 units and, since then, sustained growth took it to 1,00,000 in 2007 and 2,00,000 from 2018.
Currently, Vespas are manufactured out of three production sites. The original Pontedera facility’s production is destined for Europe, the Americas and all the western markets. The second one is in Vinh Phuc, Vietnam, which serves the local market and the Far East, while the third is in India, at the Baramati plant that commenced operations in April 2012. The Baramati factory produces Vespas for the Indian and Nepalese markets.
Vespa: the India story
Vespa entered the Indian market way back in the 1960s. The Italian manufacturer forged a partnership with Bajaj Auto, who based its Chetak scooter on it. In the 1980s, Vespa got into an alliance with LML Motors. Piaggio, Vespa's parent company, ended the partnership with LML in 1999 due to a dispute, thus exiting the Indian market.
Cut to 2012, Vespa made a re-entry into the Indian scooter market after a 13-year hiatus. It launched the Vespa LX 125 and followed it with 150cc models as well.
At present, Vespa is available in multiple trims. The Urban Club, Notte and ZX are at the base of the pyramid, available as 125cc models.
The Vespa, SXL, VXL models are available with a part-digital instrument dial, among other features, and can be bought in 125cc and 150cc versions. The top models, the Vespa Elegante and Vespa Racing Sixties Edition, get unique stripes and gold coloured wheels; you can read about its first ride review, here.