2017 Vespa Primavera and Sprint Previews

John Burns
by John Burns

Euro 4 and ready to roar

The first Vespa to bear the name Primavera, that’s “springtime” to you and me, made its first appearance in 1968 and was revolutionary: small, agile, powered by a brilliant engine. Primavera placed wings on several generations and was produced without interruption until 1982, making it one of the widest commercial successes in Vespa history. Its new incarnation is a star in its own time, says Vespa: Youthful, innovative, technologically ground-breaking, agile and dynamic, with an eye to the protection of the environment, inheriting all the freshness and joy of living from its predecessor.

For 2017, the big innovation takes the form of the new Piaggio i-get Euro 4 powerplant, “capable of ensuring brilliant performance, contained consumption and extremely high overall efficiency.” The new i-get powerplants that equip Vespa Primavera and Vespa Sprint are ultra-modern single-cylinder 4-stroke 125 and 150cc air-cooled engines with electronic injection and 3-valve heads. Every detail, from the exhaust to the internal design of the gearbox cover, has been designed to make the ride smoother, quieter and more comfortable, says Vespa.

Vespa’s new Primavera gets a pair of new Euro 4 Singles, 125 or 150cc, and standard ABS. It’s available in four fashionable color schemes and yes there are accessories. Many, many accessories…

The injection system has been optimized and improved in terms of efficiency; the ECU now has a barometric sensor that guarantees optimum combustion every time in any condition of use and at any altitude. The engines are now Euro 4-approved, and capable of performance at the top of the category: the i-get 125cc claims a maximum power and torque of 10.6 hp at 7,700 rpm and 7.7 ft-lb at 6,000 rpm. The 150cc claims 12.7 hp at 7,750 rpm and 9.4 ft-b of torque at 6,500. Smoothness, Vespa says, has been greatly improved thanks to a crankshaft fully 24% heavier than before, which spins to life more quietly courtesy of a new starter motor. A new exhaust makes the engine quieter as well, while providing a more full and pleasant timbre.

Along with the proverbial light weight typical of all Vespas, that power makes this Vespa “small body” particularly quick both in city traffic and on stretches of open road. A gearbox with new, more resistant friction materials for the dry centrifugal automatic clutch contributes to this result.

Fuel consumption is rated at up to 107 mpg for the 125, and 96 mpg for the 150cc. With 2.1-gallon fuel tanks, both engines provide great range.

All of the 125 and 150 Vespa Primavera and Vespa Sprint versions now come standard with ABS. The front wheel has a speed detection system – a sensor and a tone wheel – which instantaneously measures its speed and deceleration compared to that of the scooter. The sensor dialogues with an electro hydraulic control unit which activates ABS if the wheel decelerates abruptly. This system, developed specifically for the Vespa Primavera and Vespa Spring, is simple and lightweight, leaving the curb weight virtually unchanged.

The Sprint is the same scooter as the Primavera, practically, with big 12-inch wheels and tires instead of 11-inch ones.

The new Vespa Sprint is available in two versions: Vespa Sprint (with the 125cc displacement engine) and Vespa Sprint S (with the 125 and 150cc displacement engines), the latter sporting an attractive Titanium Grey color scheme with dedicated graphics and black painted rims. For Vespa Sprint 125 there are five colour schemes: Rosso Dragon, Nero Lucido, Montebianco, Giallo Positano and Blu Gaiola, all with a black saddle.

“Conceived as an evolution of the Vespa Primavera project and intended for young people of all ages, Vespa Sprint boasts a body that is small and lightweight, but also comfortable and protective, entirely made in steel and characterised by an extremely youthful line, marked by a gritty rectangular headlight and standing out for the large 12-inch wheels with spectacular aluminum alloy rims.” Now I want one.

Follow the rest of our 2016 Intermot Show coverage for more information on new motorcycle announcements.

John Burns
John Burns

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  • DickRuble DickRuble on Oct 07, 2016

    I love my (wife's) Vespa 150. 70-80mpg, storage compartment.. the only thing it can't handle is highways.. 60mph top speed and easily overwhelmed suspension are its only shortcomings. On the neighborhood's back roads is pretty unbeatable. A yellow 150 Sprint would be awesome.

  • Douglas Douglas on Oct 08, 2016

    Any word on US prices?