Latest Reader Question: Cross-Country Vespa? (May 14, 2018)

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!

Paul asks: I own a 10 year old Vespa 250, which I ride as my primary transportation 6 months of the year. Next year I am planning to ride across the country from San Diego to Boston. In order to occasionally take brief stints on Interstate highways when that is unavoidable, I am considering two possible options: 1) make various upgrades to the Vespa that will increase its top speed and make it more roadworthy on Interstates (eg. Malossi cylinder kit to increase displacement to 300 cc, Malossi module for fuel control, Akropovic performance exhaust, etc), or 2) purchase a larger scooter or motorcycle. I am leaning toward upgrading the Vespa. Any thoughts?

My reply: Well, a couple!

First, how comfortable are you riding that Vespa on highways, among semis? Even with the upgrades you speak of, there’s not a lot of reserve margin; there’s also the issue of long-haul comfort. Maybe do a trial run – an all-day ride on the Vespa, as is – and see how it goes. If it goes not well… .

If it were me, I’d want more reserve power, comfort and storage.

I’d personally leave the Vespa and get the bigger scooter. The Honda Silverwing is really nice; also, did you catch my write up of the BMW C650? (see here).

. . .

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  1. I like Vespa’s, really neat reliable machines.

    Keep in mind Texas and many other states are 75 mph speed limits and that’s the bare minimum safe speed on an interstate. Wind gusts and weird wind happenings with big rigs are dangerous for everything out there. No way I’d be out there with so little weight or speed capabilities.


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