Scooter sales had already peaked in Britain by the mid-1960s – led by the likes of the Lambretta and Vespa. Originally designed as transportation for commuters, the scooter came to be seen more as a vehicle for leisure. Ownership shifted to the younger generation and their appetite for speed and power was insatiable. Shops appeared offering performance tuning services for the first time and a new era of scootering dawned.
Production of the Lambretta ceased in 1971 and although Vespa survived, the scooter scene went underground during the 1970s. The passion for tuning continued to flourish however, and the release of Quadrophenia inspired a new wave of devotees going into the 1980s. Companies began investing heavily and the introduction of the TS1 cylinder kit for the Lambretta and the T5 Vespa by Piaggio took the tuning scene in a new direction.
Now the pure Lambretta and Vespa street racer came to the forefront. Owners were prepared to blow huge budgets and their stunning creations took these machines to a new level. With continued investment from manufacturers and the competition still as strong the Lambretta and Vespa Street racer scene continues to thrive.
In Lambretta & Vespa Street Racers, author Stuart Owen traces the development of scooter tuning down the decades using dozens of rare period images and highlighting every significant technological milestone along the way. The different but inseparable stories of both Lambretta and Vespa tuning are told in full with compelling insight and expert knowledge – making this a must-read for any scooter enthusiast.
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