Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Scooterist down!

As we are all wishing for the speedy recovery of Josh Rogers, partner at Scoot Magazine (read about his accident at the Scoot blog:, last weekend a scooterist went down on the Westside ride to Club Soulside. Here is the latest info, straight from Ken Salmacia, aka "Tank Top":



I spoke with Douglas today. He is doing better and able to hobble around on crutches.

Oop's on the prior e-mail. Here is a correct e-mail for Douglas. Let's be sure to give him our support.

From: Ken Salmacia []
Sent: Monday, March 10, 2008 7:29 PM
Subject: Scooterist Down!


I hope this email finds you well.

Unfortunately Douglas crashed on the ride to Souldside Saturday night. Let's give our support and give him a ring or an email. It was a really scary event. We are so glad he is going to be ok. It could have been worse! We wish him all the Best!

Douglas's cell 818 859-3212, email, myspace

Photo are posted. I also attached a few pictures.

We also have a post on the Westside Form. Please chime in.

Here is a recap from Whobike Mike . . .

As some of you may have heard, we had a rider go down last night on the way to Soulside. Doug the mod (not really a WSSC member but a regular at Soulside, Satisfaction, etc.) appears to be OK (pending results of X-rays) but was taken to hospital for his injuries. His beautiful GL still runs but the frame appears to be bent beyond repair. Doug was taken to St Joseph's hospital in Burbank, his scooter was taken to Bar Italia.

Here's an update from Doug (taken from MySpace):

Didn't quite make it to Soulside last night. Scooter is totalled, but may be able to be fixed. Hositalized, but released with no broken bones, just banged up left knee, badly sprained ankle and some good ol' road rash. suit. ruined. pride. damaged. pics coming soon.

thanks to the fellas I rode with for taking care of me and my bike following the crash, and to all who called with their concerns.
---> douglas

Doug, we wish you a speedy recovery and hope to see you on your repaired scoot sometime soon!

Piaggio finally coming out with the Vespa S

So, I got this e-mail from Piaggio USA today announcing the Vespa S model coming out. It will be interesting to see, now that Piaggio is filling up its current product line with different models, if sales figures keep up across the board and if any of the other models get "retired" like the ET line has. We'll see. Here is the e-mail FYI:


The 2008 Vespa S is the latest addition to Vespa's U.S. scooter line. Here
are all the details - if you'd like images, just let us know. We will also
have press scooters available in the Los Angeles and New Jersey fleets
starting the end of March/early April. If you're interested in scheduling a
product review, we're here to to help.

# # #

Piaggio Group USA Announces the New 2008 Vespa S

Classic or customized, this Vespa celebrates the rebel in you

NEW YORK, March 10, 2008 – Italian manufacturer Piaggio, renowned for
revolutionary ideas in personal transportation, announces the debut of the
2008 Vespa S, a retro-forward 150cc interpretation of the iconic “Vespino”
scooters that dominated the European street scene in the ‘60s and ‘70s.
Combining advanced technology and iconic styling, the new Vespa S embraces
the rebellious spirit that inspired an entire generation to change the
world. With its pure, minimalist lines, sporty performance, inconspicuous
carbon footprint and creative customization options, the Vespa S is now
ready to empower a whole new generation of riders to challenge the
conventions of our time.

Vespa Heritage: Designed to Change the World

When Italian manufacturer Piaggio introduced its first Vespa scooters in the
post-war 1940’s, they were born of functional necessity: personal mobility
for the masses in a changing era. Though designed to be simple, sturdy and
economical, the sense of Italian style was never an afterthought. The
Vespa’s aircraft-inspired unibody frame, with its clean, efficient lines,
stylish contours and revolutionary features set a design benchmark that
introduced comfort and elegance to the sensibility of personal transport.

Prominently featured in the 1952 film Roman Holiday, the Vespa began to play
a role in popular culture and became an international phenomenon. Beloved by
bohemians, artists and actors, Vespa also remained a populist icon, a
testament to its charm. In the 50’s, European Vespa clubs numbered in the
tens of thousands, while American screen icons John Wayne and Marlon Brando
took to the streets on Vespas between takes. British mods, celebrated in
such films as Alfie and Quadrophenia, rallied around Vespa a decade later.

During the 60’s and 70’s, the Vespa Special and Primavera models became
symbols for the revolutionary ideas of the time. As the protest movement
raged, Hollywood stars such as Steve McQueen and Dennis Hopper chose Vespas
for their personal style statements and Innovative advertisements and style
refinements kept the Vespa ahead of the cultural curve during the 70’s.
Today, the Vespa S continues the company’s unique ability to capture its
rebellious spirit in one technically advanced package.

Trademark Styling, Advanced Engineering

The spirit and soul of the 2008 Vespa S is in the authentic details.
Classic Vespa trademarks such as chrome trim, the minimalist front shield,
the unique rectangular headlight first seen in the 50 Special, the rounded
rear light and a 70s-inspired single-seat saddle with contrasting piping all
pay homage to the Vespa S’ legendary predecessors.

The Vespa’s structural integrity is just as innovative as its design. The
Vespa’s high-strength steel body acts as the scooter’s structural frame, a
design solution unique in the world of scooter production. In addition to
superior strength, the frame is exceptionally rigid, resulting in excellent
road holding and precision control. The scooter’s low center of gravity
also makes riding it supremely simple.

Equipped with an advanced front disc/rear drum brake system, the Vespa S
offers confident stopping power. The 11” front and 10” rear wheels with
light alloy rims add to the Vespa S’ excellent stability, and a 150cc
single-cylinder, four-stroke engine delivers sporty acceleration. Located
inside the body, the 2.3 gallon fuel tank allows easy access to the engine
and maximizes the size of the under-seat storage compartment.

Sporty and agile performance combined with low emissions and high fuel
economy reflect Vespa’s commitment to safety, reliability and environmental
respect. Like all Vespa scooters, the clean-running Vespa S sips fuel while
delivering miles of riding thrills – over 90 miles for every gallon of gas.
And, with a top speed of 59 miles per hour, the four-stroke Vespa S is ready
to get you to your next protest march, reunion tour – or the office - in
record time.

Make Your Vespa Your Canvas

Vespa has always been synonymous with freedom of expression, and the Vespa S
invites buyers to show their creative side with six new optional graphic
kits. Easily applied at the dealership, each decal collection celebrates an
element of Vespa’s heritage and personality. For example, buyers can show
their passion for la dolce vitae with stylized Italian flag decals or rock
on with a very “Mod” United Kingdom flag theme. A Sixties-style flower motif
and a retro rally theme complete the collection.

Additional accessories for the Vespa S include a matching body-color 8 ½
gallon top box, a chrome-plated tilting rear luggage rack and a
European-style half-helmet.
The 2008 Vespa S has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of
$4099. Available colors include Dragon Red, Shiny Black and Optic White.
For more information on the Vespa S visit

About The Piaggio Group:
With over 6,700 employees, an annual production of more than 680,000
vehicles in 2006, 5 R&D centers, 7 production facilities in Europe and Asia,
and operations in over 50 countries, the Piaggio Group has a consolidated
leadership in the European 2 wheeler market. Its production includes
scooters, motorcycles and mopeds in the 50cc to 1,200 cc displacement range,
marketed under the Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Derbi, Aprilia, Scarabeo and Moto
Guzzi brands.