Scooters are the lifeline of the residents of many major cities around the world. It’s often the easiest way to travel around the city without having to deal with too much traffic. However, it’s important that you choose the right scooter for you.
There are many things to consider when buying a scooter. From the model, the fixing costs and the spare parts to whether the shop provides insurance for your trusty scooter. These issues make scooters a tricky investment and one that you should do research before committing to a decision.
Especially if you are buying a second-hand scooter, then you have to ask the shop for the vehicle’s history. Did it have regular oil changes? Was it ridden regularly or has it been sitting? Has it been in an accident? What is the condition of the tires? And the list goes on. To avoid the headaches after the purchase, you need to buy your scooter from a reputable shop with a professional who can answer these questions.
Manual or automatic?
The next question is manual vs. automatic. As a general rule, manual-shift scooters require more periodic maintenance, for example, cable and gear shift adjustments, and manual dexterity If you like the idea of manual-shift scooters, you are limited to something like a Genuine Stella 150, which has a four-speed manual transmission, or something like an older Vespa or Lambretta.
An automatic scooter, on the other hand, is very simple to operate. The rider only needs to twist the throttle and they go, as simple as that. It replaces the 3-step gear shift (clutch, shift, throttle) of the manual scooter with only one motion.
Now that you’ve decided on the shifting method, it comes down to your uses. People use scooters for many different reasons. Simple commuting, running errands, delivering goods, passenger transportation, and more. These specifications will require different models to ensure that they work the best and will be most cost-efficient for its intended purpose.
The most common way to organize scooters is by their engine size. Engine size is measured in cubic centimeters (cc). It follows that the larger cc scooters are more powerful than the small cc ones. We’ll group scooters into 49cc, 80-170cc, and 200cc+ categories.
The 49cc scooters are slow and too small for most people under most circumstances. Their utility diminishes when they are taken out of their comfort zone. Because of that, we recommend not buying a 49cc scooter if you want to carry a passenger, travel easily up steep hills, or want to commute more than a few miles around town or to and from the metro on major roads.
These scooters carry tiny engine which is often too low-powered for anything more than a single person commute on a good road over short distances. These models are usually designated “50”, as in the Something-or-other-50. Depending on your needs, you might be happy with the choice as these are very cheap.
They generally can only go as fast as 30-35 mph on peak conditions. If you are looking to travel short distances around town and expect to solely travel alone, then you might enjoy the 50 models.
These are generally the typical range of scooter that people go for. They can go as fast as 50 mph, with a fairly good acceleration speed. A scooter with around 80cc engine might struggle if too much weight is put on, but for anything over 125cc, it’s generally not an issue.
Scooters with 125cc+ are especially popular in and around the Bangkok area. You can keep up with traffic, carry a passenger, ride comfortably up hills and still have reserve power under most circumstances. These scooters are a popular alternative to having a car in the city, as they are easy to park and manoeuvre around traffic as well.
200cc and Higher
Anything above the 200cc range is considered a high-power scooter. These models generally have no problem with carrying a load of cargo and passenger. The 200cc+ are generally more versatile and fit both the inner city and rural uses. A scooter of this caliber can replace a car for those who live in the outskirt of a city, as they can traverse around the 2 areas with ease.