Piaggio wants to create a niche for itself in the Indian market with its Vespa scooters. Plans to maintain high-end positioning of the Vespa by giving all its models fuel injection. A 150cc Vespa scooter will also be launched.
The retro-Italian and very cool Vespa may have limited takers compared to the competition in the 125cc automatic scooter segment; however, the aspirational value that a Vespa enjoys cannot be matched by a Honda, Suzuki or TVS in the same space. Having caught the fancy of younger customers, parent company Piaggio is now planning to upgrade its scooters by introducing fuel-injection technology across the Vespa range, upgrading from the current carburetted units.
Available as a standard feature on the international spec Vespa scooters, fuel injection was not considered for India due to the inconsistent quality of fuel available in the country. However, the company has now worked around its fuel injection system that will now be able to handle the fuel available across the country. Moreover, the company also feels that the fuel-injection system will improve the scooter’s fuel efficiency and performance over the standard carbureted versions.
The Vespa range comprises of the LX, VX and S variants. With the fuel-injection technology introduced, the new range of Vespa scooters will be priced at a premium of around Rs. 4000/- over the prevailing prices. There won’t upgrades to the engine though and the Vespa scooters will continue to be powered by the same 125cc engine producing 10 PS of power and 10.6 Nm of torque, mated to a CVT transmission. But the FI system should allow smoother power delivery throughout the rev range and improved fuel efficiency.
Apart from upgrading the current Vespa scooter lineup, Piaggio has also been working on a new 150cc fuel injected scooter that will be introduced later this year. The company retails the Sprint 150 internationally and there is a possibility that the new scooter could be a derivative of the same, complete with the retro design. The current Vespa range starts from Rs. 68,333/- going up to Rs. 74,075/- (ex-showroom, Mumbai).
Source – ZigWheels