scooter or motorcycle? I say scooter is better for most

Constantine Phaulkon

Senior Member
Jan 13, 2011
Look I'm for tradition and being old-fashioned and all, but except for off-road riding, why do you need a motorcycle with gears? Hey I've driven a BMW 325i with a five speed manual, and I appreciate gears, but truth is, even F1 race cars now have paddle shifters, that are more-or-less automatic or semi-automatic.

So why a motorcycle? Slightly better fuel mileage, and slightly quicker off the mark acceleration. Then again they are making motorcycles now that have automatic gears, and of course ABS brakes are becoming standard.

From the internet...

Touring scooters include the Suzuki Burgman 650 Executive, Yamaha T-Max 500, Piaggio BV500, Honda Silver Wing, and Vespa GTS 300.

Not all scooters are diminutive, lightweight, small-wheeled city runabouts. For those that crave highway speeds but don’t want to worry about messing around with a clutch, touring scooters – or maxi scooters – offer an interesting alternative. Touring scooters are larger than their lower-displacement cousins and can feature engines ranging anywhere from 250cc to 650cc, but they still feature the step-through design common to all scooters. Some of these larger touring scooters are nearly as capable as a full-blown motorcycle, but can be less intimidating for newer riders. Touring scooters also offer the bonus of ample storage space and impressive fuel economy.
I said it once before somewhere. I am so glad we choose differently otherwise we would all be marrying the same girl.
What is your point? Are you suggesting that motor cycles should be phased out and only scooters used? People ride bikes for many different reasons therefore choose the appropriate bike for the reason that suits them. Some riders never ride off road. Others never tour. But I would say most riders who buy big bikes get self-satisfaction just riding the bike and looking it standing still. I think for most of those riders, Scooters just wouldn’t do it!!!
Some, like me, like to race, do endless wheelies, and slide a bike through corners and all the other hooning that only high powered bikes can provide. Scooters just can perform the same.
Changing gears is also part of the whole bike riding experience. Have you ever used a bike with a quick shifter or blipped the throttle to rapidly change down gears? It all part of the buzz of riding.
I have a Honda Click and two electric bikes at home and all they are used for is to go 300 meters to the local deli to buy my bread. Other than that, they provide no excitement at all.

All of the CVT systems freewheel once the power isnt being applied.. So you have no engine braking, no downhill control / drag.. No slowing system outside of the brakes.

I actually quite like the maxi scoots.. I would happily have a T-Max 500 (or the vespa 250) to pop into town on, but theres a reason for gears and that reason for me is to increase the rider / bike connection and sensation of piloting the machine.
Thanks Brian66 and LivinLOS. I like LivinLOS's answer--engine braking is fun as I found when I drove a manual transmission automobile (I hardly used the brakes, even though you're supposed to since brakes are cheaper to replace than gears in a car). Why you cannot have engine braking (or engineer the same) into a Continuous Variable Transmission torque converter is not entirely clear to me as I type this, but I would reckon the designers decided that most of the time you don't need it--just apply brakes if you want to slow down--and it would force an expensive redesign of the transmission to get it to work.

So the choice between cycle and scooter all comes down to control: if you want the ultimate connection between man and machine, get a motorcycle, but if you want to get from point A to B while doing groceries, get a scooter.

Which raises a pet peeve of mine: why cargo space for certain "sporty" scooters is so sparse under the seat---barely enough for a bag of rice. The Honda Click is OK, but I don't like certain Suzuki models that I've seen in the Philippines that are classified as "sporty". And where do you get the aftermarket "luggage" bag you can put behind the driver for groceries? Is this commonly done in shops? I guess so but I've not seen it advertised. Half the time I end up using the handlebars to place nylon bags or that hook in the front steering column post, which I think is not optimal.
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