Interested in knowing what you get when you mix a tricycle and an extremely fast scooter?
Our guest blogger, Carson Barker, has been a freelance writing since 2001. He has a bachelor's degree in music and journalism, and when he's not writing about the entertainment industry or general news, he teaches music and art lessons in his hometown of Austin, Texas. Carson takes a close look at the newest advancements in scooters.
Here's his article:
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Piaggio MP3When it comes to scooters, Italians truly do it better. The latest trend in scooter fashion, called the MP3, is ready to tear up the roads of Europe and the U.S. by next year. Made by Piaggio (who also make the classic, notoriously cool Vespa scooter), the MP3 has broken the boundaries of what a scooter looks like, how it rides, top speeds and number of wheels.
The MP3 is a cross between a scooter and a trike, with much more to boot. Instead of the standard two wheels that most scooters are fitted with, the innovative Italian rocket has three wheels; two in the front and one in the back. This seems like an odd conception at first, but the geometrics of the design make incredible sense. Each front wheel has independent suspension, so they can move up and down with the inclines and declines of the road. This results in maximum stability at high or low speeds; this is an advantage over the two wheelers which lose balance frequently at low m.p.h.
Piaggio MP3Speaking of speed, this bad motor-scooter tops out at a reported 77 M.P.H., which ranks it in the top percentage of its class of scooters. With speeds this fast, braking is just as important. So the two front wheels have more advantages than just independent suspension, they each have their own individually controlled disc brake, which creates greater braking control. Also the dynamic duo can be locked at the same time, eliminating the need for a pesky kick-stand. For night vision, the MP3 has two separate headlights mounted directly above each wheel.
The MP3 has a single cylinder engine with an auto-trany like most scooters, and the U.S. price will be around $7,000. It is available in two engine sizes; 250cc and 125cc.
Piaggio will release the MP3 to the U.S. in 2007, on account of their scooter sales increasing by 20% in the past five years. As with most low fuel-intake vehicles, Piaggio's increase in sales is likely linked to the rising gas prices.
Another thing that Europeans are good at is accessorizing, and the MP3 follows suit. Its winter pack of accessories includes an extra large windscreen sprayed with a special chemical that steers rain to slide off rather than bubble up. The tires are thermal winter developed, allowing it to maintain stability on wet roads. Battery-powered heated leg covers that warm up your frosty flesh during cold rides also come in the winter pack, along with a heated waist coat. And if that wasn't hi-tech or e-cool enough for you, the MP3 is flanked all over with Bluetooth technology. Optional accessories include a GPS navigating system with a 3.5 LCD screen racked with Bluetooth wireless, and a special X-Jet Bluetooth intercom helmet which lets the rider make cell phone calls or communicate with whom ever is riding behind them. Tech junkies and metro-sexuals beware; this scooter has your display name written all over it.
Now scooter skeptics can get a taste of a trike/scooter hybrid that can handle average speeds on the highway with some tech stuff to boot. The MP3's stability reputation and Euro-cool looks are more aspects to conjure up consumers' interest, and keep Piaggio speeding ahead in the scooter sales business.