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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 20 Oct 2012
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Gilera vxr200 automatic scooter

Anyone done any long distance tour on an automatic scooter or thoughts of doing so
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  #2  
Old 24 Oct 2012
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Yup!

Duive01 did a lot of kilometers this year on his Honda 150 PCX:
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...s-nl-d-b-66408

The Korean scooter girls rode from Korea to Great Britain on two Honda 125 PCX:
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...rtsmouth-60562

HUBBer farqhuar rode his Burgman from Korea to Italy.

So yes, it definately can be done.

Oh, and that would be me, trying to share my experiences:
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...-50-kmph-65933

My more longwinded reply would be that an automatic scooter is a hoot to ride in town and urban situations. With my 125ccm Honda Pantheon I can blast through the roundabouts like there is no tomorrow. On extended trips it makes no difference riding an automatic scooter, I just keep the throttle pinned like I would with any other ride.

It is just going uphill when I sometimes wish I could shift gears, but then I am just riding a 15 hp small displacement "bike". A 600 ccm Burgman would be a different beast to ride.

The beltdrive is basically maintenance free for more than 20000 Kilometers on my Pantheon which is not a bad thing either ...

My scooter runs at a maximum of 105 kmph ( 65 mph) and has its sweet spot between 80 and 90 kmph (50 to 56 mph). Going above 90 kmph the noise and vibrations of the rollers will be felt to some degree, something I personally do not enjoy. With your 200 ccm scooter you might get to that point at a higher speed.

It´s not about the automatic, it is about the displacement. If you are not travelling fast on freeways you should be more than good to go.

Backroads are the most fun anyhow.
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  #3  
Old 24 Oct 2012
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I am a big fan of scooters (currently owning five Vespas - four of which are classics, and one which is a twist and go 300cc SS Super Sport). But I also own a fully tourateched Dual Sport Motorcycle (BMW F650GS Dakar) and a full blood Enduro bike (Yamaha WR250F). I have previously owned a Sports Tourer (Honda CBR600F) and a coiuple of other bikes, and I have done my fair share of adventures with all. And the point that I am leading up to, is that my advise is rooted in personal experience with various types of rides, including twis and go scooters.

I think the major benefit riding a twist and go scooter is that they under most conditions are easy to ride and are very comfortable, especially if you invest in a large wind shield (it will slow you down, but you could have a smoke in the rain, riding full speed, without getting wet or cold, and you won't get tired from the wind noise). Where you with a motorcycle need to apply a bit of muscle, telepathy will do the same job on a scooter. If the road surfaces are good, I can ride more hours on a scooter than on any motorcycle I have ever ridden, and often cover as much, and sometimes even more distance, than on a motorcycle.

I would not have any major concerns doing an RTW on any scooter, new or old, twist and go or manual... except if I planned to take routes with extremely poor road surfaces... which I like to do. The small wheels and shock travel in particular will limit where you will want to go, especially when fully loaded. Although a scooter is capable to do a lot of things, it is not the same to say that it is suitable. Also, luggage carrying capabilities is also more cumbersome as there are no really good off the shelf solutions... and there are no solutions that will leave you nice and balanced (either too wide, to high and/or to far back)

Small alloy wheels, low ground clearance, short shock travel, low power to weight ratio (including rider and luggage), will leave you feeling less confident and happy where the riding gets tough or unpredictable. It may keep you from seeking some adventures that you would have sought out with something more suitable.

As for the displacement, I would not be concerned. I think you will only feel that this is a big sacrifice on high speed highways where everyone zooms by you.

My advise, unless you have a particular kinky fetish for your twist and go, is that you trade it in for something more suitable. If cost is an issue, and you like to ride something small and light, then something like the Yamaha WR250R is a great type of bike. Strengthen the rear sub frame, get a set of cheap soft saddle bags, a wind screen and a jerry can (or larger tank if you can), and you are ready for an RTW.

If you want to see scooters in some real hard core adventure action, please see the trailer from my last adventure (it is a production for TV which hopefully the producer will be able to sell off to some nutty channel):

Budapest to Bamako Official Trailer - YouTube
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  #4  
Old 24 Oct 2012
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Quote:
As for the displacement, I would not be concerned. I think you will only feel that this is a big sacrifice on high speed highways where everyone zooms by you.
Wheelie,

in that I respectfully disagree. I had cagers pull up to my a*se without overtaking many times at about 90 - 95 kmph. Due to the small displacement I could not get away from them. So I had to trust someone who did not have enough sense in the first place to keep some distance from me. Not a nice situation.

Also due to my chronic lack of own time I would find a rig capable of going at 120 to 130 kmph for an extended period of time quite helpful. This is why I think a 500 ccm bike would be a good choice for me. Otherwise no worries, having a hiking/backpacking background my 125 is more than good enough!
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  #5  
Old 2 Nov 2012
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Thanks for the replies lads, food for thought.
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  #6  
Old 26 Dec 2012
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Vespa is a pretty good choice

If you want to get a good scooter for a long distance ride, the Vespa 200GT would be a good bet. It's liquid cooled. Parts are available just about everywhere, and it's carbureted, so it can be worked on anywhere.
There are Vespa owners clubs throughout the world, so you can always connect with fellow scooterists.
The Vespa frame can take a lot more abuse and weight than most of the plastic over tube scooters out there today.
Biggest problem you will run into is fuel capacity. Most scooters have a 1-2 gallon tank, and once you load them up and start doing miles, the fuel economy isn't as great as you might think. I got about 49mpg on my Vespa ET4 before someone decided to steal it.

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  #7  
Old 27 Dec 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grumpy View Post
Anyone done any long distance tour on an automatic scooter or thoughts of doing so
Just bought a Gilera vxr200 before one week and i am happy with it.....With a pair of a soft panniers and a dry bag i think you can go everywhere!

This guy did it..... Ride piaggio scooters traveling in China, total journey 15814km!
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