The Aero was Honda’s first modern scooter in North America, where it was introduced in 1983. A second generation was introduced in 1985, and these have served as reliable in-town runabouts ever since.
Zundapp was able to sell about 130,000 examples of the Bella scooter between 1953 and 1964. Engine options were a 150 (146) or 200 (198) – here’s an original example of the latter.
The Kit Kat was Italjet’s solution for people who enjoyed flying and boating but then found themselves at a destination without wheels for land. It weighed just 73 pounds, so you could even throw it in the trunk of your car if necessary.
Post Listing Update: This Highlander did not meet reserve with 9 bids up to $2,550.11 on eBay in Ormond Beach, Florida. In 1958, Cushman created the Model 721 variant of the Highlander with an open frame in the rear. They made it for just three months before covering the back half in fiberglass bodywork. Here’s one of those rare open …
Post Sale Update: This Road King sold for $4,950 after 34 bids on eBay in Mentor, Ohio. Introduced in 1946, the Road King was internally known as the Model 54 in Cushman’s lineup. It was very similar to the Pacemaker, though it earned its “King” title with an upgraded 2-speed transmission.
The Cezeta 50x series of scooters are some of the most interestingly-styled vehicles that have ever been built. This is an example of the 501, the first of the series made by the Czechoslovakian company.
In its long history, Harley-Davidson has only created one scooter. As you might guess, it was not a commercial success. Harley offered to rare factory options that could be mounted on the side – either a utility box or an adorable sidecar – here’s one with the latter.
Post Sale Update: sold for $12,200 after 38 bids on eBay in Chicago, Illinois. The overlap of people who are passionate about golf and motorcycles isn’t particularly large, but this beautiful scooter could unite the two fronts! Built by the Bobcat company of Wheeling, Illinois, this was designed to let people “play more golf, better golf, more relaxing golf.” Amusingly, …
Post Listing Update: This Pranafa was pulled off of eBay, final sale price unknown. Originally imported to the US by Hap Alzina, the west coast BSA dealer, the Pranafa Playboy was a mini-scooter built by Dr. Seiffert in Frankfurt, Germany. The intent was something to have something you could take to work but be so small you could park it …
Post Sale Update: This Welbike sold for $12,433 after 33 bids on eBay in Seattle, Washington. At the request of the British government, Excelsior developed the Welbike, a tiny single seater that was designed to be dropped into combat situations via parachute-equipped containers. The goal was that it could be unpacked and ready to ride within 11 seconds.
In 2004, Leon Haslam earned Rookie of the Year honors while competing in World Superbike with the Renegade team with Noriyuki Haga. Leon’s best finish was 3rd, and he finished the season in 8th place. Italjet released a limited edition replica of his pit bike with a special cosmetic package that replicated what Leon would occasionally putt around on.
Post Sale Update: sold for $102.50 after 21 bids on eBay. After Motobecane took over the company in 1974, VéloSoleX made several changes to their front-wheel drive motorized bicycle to comply with US DOT regulations. Updates to the 4600 in 1977 resulted in the V3 model, including CEV switchgear, ULO taillight, and UNION pedals.
Post Sale Update: This little Yamaha sold for $1,610.58 after 26 bids on eBay. Also known as the “Chappy”, here’s a cute little step-through scooter that was releasedto compete with Honda’s tiny trail bikes – the most common options were the LB50 and this LB80, the latter of which features an oil-injected 82cc engine and a 2-speed, 2-stage transmission.
In 1936, NSU introduced a moped called the Quick. It was quite popular – they sold almost 250,000 over a production run that lasted until 1953. Even more popular was the successor, the amusingly-named “Quickly.” From 1953-1968, NSU sold over a million units! Here’s a 60 year-old survivor.