4-8 February 2019, Arenzano (Genoa) – International press launch for the new Vespa GTS 2019 range, attended by journalists from Italy, France, Germany, Britain, Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Five days of test rides, along the winding coastal roads of western Ligurian, starting from the Gran Hotel Arenzano and travelling as far as Varigotti, a well-known tourist resort near Finale Ligure, in the province of Savona, with incursions into the historical Borgo Saraceno area with its fascinating views. Five days to road test the “super” Vespa scooters of the updated GTS range.
Vespa GTS goes down in history as one of the world's best-loved two-wheelers, taking up the baton from the legendary “Vespone” (“big Vespa”), the name given to those Vespas with a large, strictly steel body. Vespa can transport you around the city with style but it is also ready to travel and even adventure, thanks to increasingly generous engine capacity. Born in 2003 with the arrival of the Vespa GT 125 and 200, the family of large Vespas evolved from 2005, with the arrival of the GTS 250 version followed by engine capacities of up to 300 cc. 2016 saw the Vespa GTS benefit from the family of i-get engines, offering 125 and 150 cc capacity.
For 2019, the entire Vespa GTS range is further improved, with the introduction of a series of updates that boost performance, comfort and style. The new Vespa GTS range, so rich in terms of its standard outfitting, now comprises five versions: Vespa GTS, GTS Touring, GTS Super, GTS SuperSport and the brand-new, technological Vespa GTS SuperTech, with colour TFT display that maximises connectivity to a smartphone with the VESPA MIA system.
There are two engine types, the already well-known 125 i-get single-cylinder now flanked by the new 300 hpe (High Performance Engine), fruit of the latest Piaggio Group engine technology research, which focuses on the creation of units that are increasingly advanced and efficient in terms of containing emissions and consumption. Able to deliver power in excess of 23 HP, this is the most powerful engine ever seen on a Vespa.
DESIGN: TRADIZION AND MODERNITY. The Vespa GTS has always evolved along the path of tradition, striking a magical balance between tradition and modernity in the lines of its body, made strictly of steel. The numerous updates made to the design of the new Vespa GTS are no exception, the model standing out from previous versions while also retaining its distinctive characteristics. The front light and rear light set now adopt full LED light technology, a solution that contributes to heightening active safety. The front end features a redesigned shield, at the centre of which is the unmistakeable horn cover, now longer and enhanced with three decorations. Also new are the shape of the handlebars, the chrome-plated crest on the front mudguard, the rear-view mirrors and the grilles along the side of the shield, now featuring a brand-new honeycomb motif.
At the rear, the restyling takes in the side panels that run under the body, while versions powered by a 300 hpe engine stand out for their new engine crankcase cover and newly designed silencer cover.
LEGENDARY COMFORT, FURTHER IMPROVED. The perfect ergonomics and natural seat position have always contributed to making every Vespa comfortable, pleasant to ride and accessible to all. The new Vespa GTS further highlights the strong touring vocation that large Vespas have always embodied, offering a new saddle able to ensure greater comfort for both rider and passenger. A result achieved thanks to optimised ergonomics and the use of new materials in the padding and upholstery.
The under-saddle compartment makes optimum use of the available space and can accommodate two Vespa Visor 3.0 demi-jet helmets and more. Also adding to the load capacity of the Vespa GTS is the glove box, inside which there is a USB port, useful for the charging of external devices.
THE 300 HPE ENGINE: THE MOST POWERFUL AND RESPONDIVE VESPA OF ALL TIME. The new Vespa GTS is equipped with the latest evolution of the 300 cc, 4-stroke, 4-valve single-cylinder engine, liquid-cooled and with electronic injection: the fruit of work by the Piaggio Group research and development centre and known as 300 hpe (High Performance Engine), the unit has benefited from numerous interventions aimed at increasing performance and rideability, while simultaneously reducing fuel consumption and noise levels. With respect to the previous version, maximum power reaches a value of 17.5 kW (23.8 HP) at 8250 rpm, which translates into a 12% increase, while maximum torque, equating to 26 Nm at 5250 rpm, is boosted by 18%. Values of reference that comes into their own during off-the-line acceleration. These improvements come in addition to a significant reduction in consumption, figures going from 29.4 km/l to 31.2 km/l in the WMTC cycle. In other words, it is the most powerful engine ever mounted on a Vespa, a result achieved thanks to meticulous work by Piaggio technicians across a large number of components. The main aim of the project was to optimise thermodynamic performance and reduce friction and engine noise, while at the same time increasing performance and general rideability. All without impacting on size or bulk, which remain the same as for the previous unit, at the top of its category.
The cylinder head is born out of a brand-new casting and is characterised by totally redesigned internal components: the ducts have a new geometry and diameter (now greater), as do the intake and exhaust valves, the diameter of which has been increased by 3 mm. The adoption of a new-look piston, particularly in terms of its head shape, has resulted in a highly efficient combustion chamber. The single camshaft system with overhead valves is all new, rockers equipped with roller tappets rather than sliders for increased fluidity and durability, and a reduction in mechanical loss. The profile of the camshaft has been redesigned to obtain different valve lift profiles, more extreme but also able to reduce the noise generated by the timing: essentially, greater valve lift duration ensures better filling of the combustion chamber, which translates into greater efficiency. As a result, the valve springs have also been altered in terms of load and size.
The introduction of a new high-pressure multi-jet injector has helped to improve combustion. A more generous intake line, equipped with a duct of optimised length, improves the torque delivered at low revs and ensures exceptionally smooth shifting at any speed. The new iridium spark plug ensures greater durability, conditions of use being equal.
The many modifications made to the engine have also boosted the already legendary Vespa GTS reliability, as demonstrated by the significant maintenance intervals, now extended to 10,000 km. Transmission has also been overhauled, the CVT boasting a more robust belt and new materials designed to reduce friction and noise. All of this is enveloped by a new cover coated with sound absorbing material, for a reduction in mechanical noise, also aided by a new and more rigid clutch drum. The engine is controlled by a latest-generation Magneti Marelli MIUG4 ECU, which already conforms with the future Euro 5 standard: equipped with greater calculation capacity, it contributes to improving overall engine efficiency and also allows for the engine to be started practically instantaneously, after just two rotations of the crankshaft.
125 I-GET ENGINE. All models in the new Vespa GTS range are also available with the 125 four-valve i-get engine with electronic injection and liquid cooling. An engine that tops its category in terms of performance and respect for the environment. Engines in the i-get family stand out for their adoption of the Piaggio-patented Start & Stop system known as RISS (Regulator Inverter Start & Stop System). The system eliminates the traditional starter, replaced by a brushless "direct mount" electrical device, installed directly on the crankshaft. There are many advantages to this, including quieter starts, reduced weight, greater reliability, and lower fuel consumption. Piaggio's Start & Stop system automatically switches off the engine 3 to 7 seconds after the vehicle has stopped (depending on whether the engine has reached its correct operating temperature or not). A minimal rotation of the throttle is enough to instantly re-start the engine, absolutely silently, as there is no traditional starter. If the side stand is deployed or the tilt sensor comes into operation, the control unit cuts off the Start & Stop function, that is, the engine turns off and will not re-start automatically.
The 125 i-get engine is accredited with power of 9 kW at 8250 rpm. Translated onto the road, this data makes for a brilliant engine, specifically designed and created with the needs of the user in mind, for optimum riding in built-up, urban environments. Such riding conditions are marked by frequent starts and stops, which require elasticity, lively acceleration and a smooth ride. Characteristics ensured by the optimum torque value (11.1 Nm at 6750 rpm), which allows the Vespa GTS to excel when it comes to the standing start and pickup. All with a declared WMTC cycle consumption of 41.6 km/l.
TECHNOLOGY AIMED AT MAXIMUN SAFETY. As is the case for every Vespa produced between 1946 and today, the body of the Vespa GTS is produced strictly in steel and offers unrivalled robustness, as well as unique levels of safety and dynamism. The result is a particularly brilliant ride both in city traffic as well as on country roads: an exhilarating mix of handling and reassuring stability, also thanks to the generous section tyres fitted on 12 inch diameter wheel rims. The double-disc braking system ensures prompt deceleration, even during sports use, with a reserve of modularity to put even neophytes at ease.
The Piaggio Group is the first manufacturer to introduce scooter ASR electronic traction control, once available only on the best motorcycles, which prevents wheelspin. The electronic control package is rounded-off by the ABS anti-braking system. Both are supplied as standard with the Vespa GTS family.
ALWAYS CONNECTED WITH VESPA MIA. The VESPA MIA connectivity system allows you to connect your smartphone to the on-board electronic system of the Vespa GTS via Bluetooth, for exclusive functionality that is sure to make the riding experience even more satisfying and fun. VESPA MIA and the new Vespa App are specifically designed to connect iOS or Android mobile devices to those latest Vespa models equipped with an instrument cluster and TFT display, namely Vespa Elettrica, Vespa Primavera S and Vespa Sprint S, and the brand-new entry to the Vespa GTS range, the SuperTech.
Once a smartphone is connected to the Vespa GTS SuperTech - associating the phone via the dedicated Vespa App, available for download in the App Store or Google Play - the TFT display will show all notifications regarding incoming calls and messages in the centre of the screen. The system also allows for the management of calls, thanks to the practical joystick located on the left-hand control block, and the use of smartphone voice commands when making calls or reproducing music, with the activation of a playlist. To fully appreciate this functionality, Vespa GTS SuperTech proposes a dedicated Jet helmet as an accessory, which is integrated with earphones and a Bluetooth intercom. The display also serves as a navigation tool, accompanying the rider on a pre-set route set up on the Vespa App, with directions and pictograms. VESPA MIA is included as standard on the Vespa GTS SuperTech, while the Vespa Multimedia Platform is available as an accessory for other models in the new Vespa GTS range. As well as infotainment and navigational functions, which make use of the instrument panel with TFT display, the app is also an exceptional source of useful information regarding vehicle status, riding parameters and travel statistics, which can be viewed on the smartphone.
The VESPA MIA technology optimises Vespa GTS usage whether riding in an urban or non-urban environment, thus enhancing the travel experience.
VERSIONS AND COLOURS. The classic version of the Vespa GTS is offered in a Dolomite Grey shade as well as in two new colours, Relax Green and Energy Blue. This base model gives way to the adventurous Vespa GTS Touring, a tribute to the Vespa travelling vocation. Millions of Vespa, equipped for tourism, have long since travelled the world's roads, giving entire generations the opportunity to get to know each other, by broadening their horizons and encountering different cultures.
Vespa GTS Touring stands out for its evocative top fairing, which offers added protection without impacting on its elegance (thanks to its reduced size), and its rear luggage rack that, combined with the spacious under-saddle compartment, guarantees excellent load capacity when embarking on those unforgettable holidays, alone or in two. Available in Vignola Red and the new Wood Green, Vespa GTS Touring also features a refined and elegantly upholstered saddle and a dedicated plate on the back of the shield.
The GTS Super version embodies the typical Vespa values of style, comfort, safety and also outstanding sportiness, taking up the baton from legendary sports models of the past, such as the 1955 Vespa GS 150, the 1965 Vespa 180 SS and the 1985 T5 “Pole Position”. Immediately identifiable by its black rims with diamond-shaped finish and double-upholstered saddle with clasp, it is available in four colours: Innocence White, Polished Black, and Passion Red, as well as the new Summer Yellow.
Vespa GTS SuperSport is the ultimate in Vespa sportiness, boasting a strong character that is emphasised by total black rims and two bold matte colours, namely Titanium Grey and the brand-new Vivid Blue, both enhanced with new dedicated graphics. As with the Super, GTS SuperSport also stands out for its double-upholstered saddle with clasp.
The new Vespa GTS SuperTech represents the top of the Vespa GTS range, the ultimate in sportiness and technology. GTS SuperTech is the first large-bodied Vespa to adopt a fully digital instrument cluster with 4.3" full colour TFT display. The instrument panel, as well as displaying all the classic information such as speed, total and partial mileage, ambient temperature, and fuel level, works as a display for the VESPA MIA smartphone connectivity system.
Aesthetically, Vespa GTS SuperTech is characterised by wheel rims and horn cover decorations that have a special matte black finish. The yellow painted front shock spring serves as an original element that contrasts with the two available colours of Volcano Black and Matter Grey. Even the seats have a “hi-tech” finish, with double upholstery and two-colour stitching with yellow detailing.
ACCESSORIES. In line with Vespa tradition, the new GTS boasts a wide range of accessories with which to personalise the vehicle and increase comfort and functionality. The top box, which can accommodate a full-face helmet or two jet helmets, is painted to match the chassis and comes complete with a padded backrest to optimise passenger comfort. The chrome front and rear luggage racks are among the most requested and appreciated accessories and characterise the Vespa personality in a strong and distinct fashion, as well as underscoring its long touring history.
The perimeter guard kit is just one of the chrome accessories and guarantees maximum Vespa protection while making a strong aesthetic impact. For an added touch of elegance, an all-Italian brown real leather seat is available. Protection on board is guaranteed by the methacrylate impact and splinter resistant windshield and by the high-quality transparent or smoke top fairing with its compact and sporty lines. The leg cover in thermal material is easy to install and offers year-round riding comfort. The set of accessories is completed with an anti-slip, waterproof rubber mat, outdoor and indoor vehicle covers, a mechanical anti-theft system, inner top box bag, luggage straps and a smartphone bracket. Also available for the Super and SuperSport versions, in addition to the perimeter guards and luggage rack in matte black, are a sports saddle that combines two technical materials and sophisticated aluminium details that enhance the sports look, specifically a top fairing, mudguard crest, rear-view mirrors and a handlebar control component kit, which includes brake levers, hand grips and handlebar tips in billet aluminium.
All Vespa accessories and style complements are available online. On the vespa.com website, a point of reference for Vespa fans all over the world, doors to the Vespa Store are now open, the web space presenting all of the Vespa lifestyle collections available to fans. In the Vespa Store, a wide array of clothing, gadgets and accessories, conceived and designed by drawing on classic Vespa iconography, is available to everybody, allowing you to experience Vespa style and dress with casual elegance, surrounded by preciously made objects which are reminiscent of timeless shapes.