Vespa PX ceases production

Classic scooter fails to meet EU regulations

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Aug. 26, 2008
Piaggio has halted production of the iconic Vespa PX because the two-stroke 125cc manual transmission scooter fails to meet European emission standards.

Introduced in 1977, the Vespa PX became the vehicle of choice for the revived British Mod scene of the late ’70s. The scooter’s popularity skyrocketed after it was featured in the 1979 film Quadrophenia, named after the album by The Who.

Sales of the Vespa PX have remained consistent in recent years with about 15,000 units sold annually. According to Tony Campbell, Vespa’s United Kingdom general manager, the European Union’s tightening restrictions spelled the demise of the PX.First appearing in October, 1977, the Vespa PX has a four-speed manual transmission with a handlebar shifter.

“In an effort to clean up emissions of all motorized vehicles, the EU government has set a number of standards to be met within certain deadlines,” says Campbell. “The new emissions regulations, known as ‘Euro 3’, make the production of a two-stroke engine larger than 50cc not economically feasible.

“The Vespa PX will undoubtedly go down in history as one of the best. A model does not last for 30 years unless it was right in the first place.”