Best Scooter Of 2016

Troy Siahaan
by Troy Siahaan

Best Scooter of the Year Winner: Vespa GTS 300 Super ABS

It’s been a quiet year on the scooter front, as headlines have understandably gone towards more exciting models and categories of two-wheeling. The industry hasn’t offered much new in scootering this year, and by extension, neither have we. So it’s with this harsh reality that we announce the winner for our 2016 Best Scooter award… is the same as last year: The Vespa GTS 300 Super ABS.

Don’t let that get you down though, as a year on and the Vespa is still a sweet ride. It may “only” have 278cc, but it scoots along with enough gusto to get the holeshot on your daily commute. And should your commute be run on roads that should have been repaved during the Bush administration (either of them), then you’ll be happy to have the Vespa’s traction control and ABS at the ready to cover your back should you need it.

If you go back to our five-scoot Mid-Size MotoScooter Melee, you’ll see that all our testers had nothing but nice things to say about the Vespa en route to it winning our test. It costs more than its competition, starting at $6,599, but what you get in return is a well-styled ride with sporty handling, important safety features, and loads of tech, including a smartphone app that, among its many features, will help you find your GTS the next time you forget where you parked it.

Honorable Mention: Yamaha SMAX

No shocker here: Yamaha’s SMAX gets the honorable mention in the scooter category, just as it did last year. And, there are some on the MO staff who would rather have the Yamaha. Sure the Vespa is gorgeous and advanced for a scooter. But at $3,690, the Yamaha is almost half the price of the Vespa, so it offers up a much nicer bang-for-the-buck ratio.

Honda PCX150 vs. Yamaha SMAX

The SMAX’s 155cc engine is no match for the Italian, but it’s still legal for use on the highway, will get you to 80 mph (if you’re patient), and return 75 mpg even if you ride like a heavy-handed yahoo — even better if you’re the sensible type. It can fit a full-face helmet under the seat with room to spare, or a decent supply of groceries. We can’t ignore what the Vespa brings to the table in terms of tech, and no matter how you slice it, there’s still no replacement for displacement, but Yamaha’s SMAX delivers superior practicality and is an enviable value for the money. Best of 2016 Categories
Troy Siahaan
Troy Siahaan

Troy's been riding motorcycles and writing about them since 2006, getting his start at Rider Magazine. From there, he moved to Sport Rider Magazine before finally landing at in 2011. A lifelong gearhead who didn't fully immerse himself in motorcycles until his teenage years, Troy's interests have always been in technology, performance, and going fast. Naturally, racing was the perfect avenue to combine all three. Troy has been racing nearly as long as he's been riding and has competed at the AMA national level. He's also won multiple club races throughout the country, culminating in a Utah Sport Bike Association championship in 2011. He has been invited as a guest instructor for the Yamaha Champions Riding School, and when he's not out riding, he's either wrenching on bikes or watching MotoGP.

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3 of 6 comments
  • AM AM on Aug 04, 2016

    Troy, you definitely need to ride the Yamaha TMAX. The Vespa can only dream to be a TMAX.

    • Douglas Douglas on Aug 05, 2016

      Well, the TMax is a class above this (over 500cc), don't think Piaggio imports anything that size, except the 3 wheelers. But the T is a great scoot, close to the dearly departed SilverWing.

  • Buzz Buzz on Aug 06, 2016

    The Vespa is on my list. I bought a used Yamaha Vino 125 a few years ago. I've used it enough to know I'd like a little more power for the hills around here. I'll eventually find a used Vespa with all the goodies on it. Gotta wait till the kid moves out through. He's already crashed my Vino.