How to Buy a Vespa Scooter

by Tom Lutzenberger

Purchasing a Vespa, vintage or new, can be a wonderful adventure or a painful mistake. Unless you are buying new, almost all vintage and used Vespa scooters will come from private parties. As a result, it helps to follow a few steps to protect your wallet.

Figure Out What You Want

Research Vespa scooters to become knowledgeable about them. Vespa scooters work a bit different than automatic scooters or motorcycles since they have a gear-shifting handle mechanism. Also, many owners do their own maintenance so it helps to understand what's involved and where to order spare parts from. If you're a big person and want to do highway travel, you will need a 200 cc plus engine. A small frame Vespa and/or a smaller engine works for tootling around town only.

Where to Look

Local and regional newspaper classifieds help, but Internet classifieds offer the most potential for used scooter purchases. Licensed dealers can provide new models directly (see Resources).

The Purchase

Bring an experienced Vespa owner with you if possible when visiting a seller for a potential purchase. Evaluate the Vespa scooter for sale by turning it on, taking a test ride and testing the electrical switches and lights. If you decide you want to buy, use a certified check or money order, not cash.

About the Author

Since 2009 Tom Lutzenberger has written for various websites, covering topics ranging from finance to automotive history. Lutzenberger works in public finance and policy and consults on a variety of analytical services. His education includes a Bachelor of Arts in English and political science from Saint Mary's College and a Master of Business Administration in finance and marketing from California State University, Sacramento.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Vespa Scooter Seat image by Billy Tait from