2014 Vespa Sprint 125 Scooter Test
Twist and go – it’s yellow, it’s comfortable, and I’m in Rome. It doesn’t get much better, and as we head off I place myself at the front like the rooster in a hen house. “Cock-a-doodle-doo” the 2014 Vespa Sprint 125 scooter says, and I’m where I like to be – in heavy “be fast or be dead” Rome traffic.
The 31.1-inch high seat is comfortable, black with a white stripe and I’ve got ample leg space. Under the seat is more space than ever on a Vespa with its 16.6-liter compartment. The extra space has been enabled by moving the battery from underneath the helmet compartment to under the foot plates.
The 2.1-gallon fuel tank will take you a long way in the city as the claimed fuel consumption figures stipulate 64km per liter presuming an average speed of 50km/h which is a realistic inner city speed.
The Vespa Sprint 125 is very fast out of the traffic lights and most of the time it’s the fastest beating other scooters we met on the test. This speaks good things about the small 125cc four stroke 3-Valvole engine that powers the chassis ahead. It has got enough grunt to get you fast up to 50km/h but after this you feel that it’s a small engine. The Sprint will not get a 150cc version but two different 50cc’s will be available from the Pontedera factory, one four stroke and one two stroke.
It’s the Primavera derived steel chassis and body which impresses the most with upgraded suspension. The Sprint feels tight and not flimsy at all. Over the many cobalt streets in Rome the Sprint handles well and doesn’t transfer too much vibration and shock to the rider. The Sprint is a small body scooter and as such there will always be some extra feel from the tarmac but it’s more than tolerable.
The rear drum brake and front disc gives plenty of power to stop quickly. Testing on damp roads it’s good to know that as of next year Vespa will add ABS to its scooters for the first time. ABS is good but it must also be said that due to the compact build and light weight it takes a lot to lock the wheels and the front disc isn’t overpowering like on a motorcycle so there should be no panicky surprises on a Vespa.
The new Vespa Sprint 125 gets new 12 inch wheels, which add to both comfort and safety around the city. The Sprint replaces the “S” model as the new youthful and sporty choice in the Vespa range. As with the Sport and also the original from the 60’s the Sprint continues to signify its existence with a square headlamp.
Vespa sold 198,600 units in 2013 and it was aptly mentioned in the press conference that Vespa is Piaggio’s Coca Cola. If the trend continues we could see Vespa pass the incredible 200K mark in 2014.
I have no doubt that the Sprint will contribute to these figures in a favorable way as it’s a very good product. The 125 has a 10K maintenance interval which is great for consumers but not as great for dealerships as they’ll hardly ever be in for anything.
Back in 1968 Vespa was a young lady, but she’s just as fresh at 68 so long may she live.
2014 Vespa Sprint 125 Positives/Negatives:
+ Large 12 inch wheels
+ Improved suspension and chassis
+ Comfortable and easy to ride
– Lack of ABS
– I wouldn’t mind a Sprint with a larger engine also
Photos by Milagro