A Vespa sidecar is a unique way to make your Piaggio Vespa scooter stand out in a crowd and add more functionality at the same time. The addition of a sidecar to a Vespa is not an incredibly difficult process, but does take some time and effort and usually minor adjustments will need to be made once it is installed. For those scooter riders that are not very mechanically inclined the installation of a Vespa sidecar is best left to the professionals.
Before jumping headlong into the purchase of a sidecar for a Vespa, the rider needs to consider what is to be gained and, more importantly, what will be lost by adding a sidecar! One of the principle reasons that people choose to ride a scooter is convenience. A sidecar will paradoxically both add and subtract from this benefit.
What does a Vespa sidecar gain?
Attaching a sidecar to a scooter instantly increases the carry capacity and utilitarian role of the scooter. A passenger can be carried with ease and in relative comfort. The sidecar can also act like a trunk and be a great place to store groceries, schoolbooks, or work related items for a short commute. An aftermarket sidecar will definitely add style and even value to your existing scooter. In urban areas or other regions infiltrated by scooter culture, this may be a unique way to stand out in a crowd.
What are some downsides to a Vespa sidecar?
It is not all gain with a sidecar, however. Many scooter owners are surprised to find themselves regretting the sidecar purchase only weeks after getting one. One of the joys of a scooter is the freedom, convenience and gas mileage it provides. A sidecar in effect turns a scooter into a "mini car". The turning and joy of driving is greatly diminished. There is a learning curve to steering a sidecar-laden scooter and many owners miss the tight, smooth handling of an unburdened Vespa. A scooter is extremely convenient and practical in tight urban areas. Parking is at a premium and a normal scooter has many options. The use of a sidecar may limit where it can be parked and it may no longer be possible to park on many sidewalks. Another downside is the strain on gas mileage and the scooter itself. Additional weight of a sidecar and a passenger will greatly reduce gas mileage. Normally, the sidecar will be empty so this affects gas mileage for even routine trips. Some owners strap a sidecar to a 150cc model and are shocked at the loss in speed and power. Sidecars are heavy and are best with a P200E, or a PX200 or larger bike.
A Vespa sidecar like a cool Cozy bullet is an awesome sight and is sure to get a lot of compliments. The smart owner will spend time test driving a friend's Vespa with sidecar to determine if they can live with the handling and feel of this addition. Many Vespa dealerships will allow an extensive test drive as well, but it may be more difficult to find a sidecar model on display. Consider the pros and cons of how a sidecar will affect the joy of owning a Vespa. Many riders are not concerned with being part of the tricked out mod crowd so image is not crucial, but functionality definitely is.