Is Vespa Good For Beginners? 8 Reasons Why

Vespa GTS large frame parked in Rotterdam city

Are you a beginner looking for the perfect motorcycle? From our own experience, we know a Vespa is ideal for beginners compared to a motorcycle. With its unique design and long history, the Vespa has always been popular among riders of all levels. Originally created in 1946 as an affordable mode of transportation, the modern Vespa has become a more stylish and practical option for city riding.

So why is Vespa good for beginners? All modern Vespas are automatic making it very easy to drive for beginners. All you need to do is twist the throttle handle and you are good to go. You don’t need to worry about the clutch and gears. Plus you are sitting upright, making driving more comfortable.

Compared to a regular motorcycle a Vespa is also easier to maneuver, is more fuel efficient, and has lower maintenance costs.

From the small-frame Vespa Sprint to the large-frame GTS models, there’s something for everyone. And with options like classic and 50cc models available, you can find the perfect fit for your level of driving experience.

Advantages of Choosing a Vespa as a Beginner

1. Lightweight and Compact Design

the vespa has a compact design making it easy to park everywhere
Easy parking in the city with a Vespa

One of the most significant advantages of choosing a Vespa as your first ride instead of a motorcycle is its lightweight and compact design. The Vespa is designed to be easy to maneuver, making them perfect for beginners who may not have much experience riding motorcycles. The small size also makes it easier to park in tight spaces, which is ideal if you live in an urban area.

The lightweight design means that you won’t feel overwhelmed by the bike’s weight, making it easier to handle. This can help build your confidence on the road and make you more comfortable with riding.

2. Smooth acceleration makes it easy to drive in traffic

Another advantage of the Vespa is its automatic transmission. Unlike motorcycles that require manual gears, the Vespa has an automatic transmission that eliminates the constant shifting of gears up and down depending on the speed and road conditions.

A Vespa allows riders to focus on the road ahead without worrying about changing gears.

If you haven’t ever driven a Vespa before then you might want to read the article we wrote on how to drive a Vespa.

3. Comfortable Seating Position

The main difference between a Vespa and a motorcycle is the seating position. Many motorcyclists are often seated slightly forward while riding. Vespa drivers on the other hand are seated upright reducing strain on their back and neck muscles. This makes it easier to ride for longer periods without feeling fatigued or uncomfortable.

From the very beginning, Piaggio wanted to avoid designing another type of motorcycle where the rider had to place the legs on both sides of the bike. Instead, they pictured a motorcycle on which everybody could drive comfortably, even ladies with skirts. Up till today, Piaggio has never changed its winning design.

Additionally, the Vespa scooter model comes equipped with storage space under the seat, allowing riders to store personal belongings securely making riding safer and more comfortable as well.

4. Low Maintenance Cost

The maintenance cost for a Vespa is low making it a smart choice for beginners. The Italian scooters have simple engines that require minimal upkeep, making them an ideal option for first-time riders who don’t want to spend too much money on repairs and maintenance.

Vespa scooters are known for their durability and longevity. They are built with high-quality materials that can withstand wear and tear over time. This means that you won’t have to worry about replacing your Vespa anytime soon, saving you money in the long run.

5. Suitable for Short Commutes

vespa are a easy drive through the city
A perfect drive through the city

If you’re looking for a mode of transportation that’s perfect for short commutes around town or city, then a Vespa scooter is a far better choice than a motorcycle. The automatic geared Vespa is designed with urban environments in mind, making them ideal for navigating through crowded streets easily.

Moreover, many cities now offer designated parking spots specifically for scooters like Vespas. In the Netherlands for instance, it is even ok to park a Vespa on the pavement saving you time searching for a suitable parking spot.

6. Fuel-Efficient Engine

Vespa scooters also offer great fuel efficiency compared to cars or even larger motorcycles. You will not have to spend too much money on gas when driving your Vespa as a daily mode of transportation.

While driving a Vespa will save you money on gas, we did find out that it isn’t as eco-friendly as many have claimed. We explained in an article if Vespa is as eco-friendly as we thought.

7. Suits different driving needs

driving a vespa in a city such as lyon is time efficient
Vespa is a popular city bike in Lyon France

Vespa has a long list of models with different engine displacements making it suitable for riders of all levels. Additionally, its small and large frame models are all built with different engine displacements. There are models perfect for those who just want to drive in the city or models that are ideal for longer commutes over the highway.

If you are still unsure which Vespa is perfect for driving needs, then check this article where we guide you step by step towards finding your ideal Vespa.

8. No special skills or licenses required

vespa elettrica comes can go 30mph or 45mph
Ok, there is always an age limit for riding a Vespa 🙂

Another advantage of the Vespa is that you don’t need any special skills or licenses to ride it. Depending on the engine displacement of course.

In some countries, you don’t need an actual motorcycle license to drive a Vespa with a 50cc or 125cc engine displacement. A regular driving license is enough to drive these types of Vespa.

Unlike with a motorcycle, this means that beginners can easily get started with riding a Vespa without having to go through any additional training or licensing. Do check the law and regulations of your country first.

However, generally speaking, as soon as you go for a Vespa Primavera 150 or a GTS 125 or GTS 300 then a motorcycle license is mandatory.

That said, after having my first motorcycle introduction lesson, I can fully imagine that once you do have your motorcycle license you will not go for a Vespa. Shifting gears does add to the sense of speed and driving experience. As mentioned Vespa is ideal for city riding, but a motorcycle does give you that extra thrill if you need to go long distances and fast.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Vespa as a Beginner

Budget Constraints

vespa red parked next to three other vespa primavera's
This ‘Vespa Red’ is many times more expensive than the others parked next to it

One of the most important factors to consider when buying a Vespa as a beginner is your budget. Vespas are known for their high-quality and stylish designs, but they can also come with a hefty price tag. Before making any purchases, it’s crucial to set a realistic budget that you can afford.

When setting your budget, it’s essential to consider not just the upfront cost of the scooter but also other expenses such as insurance, maintenance costs, fuel costs, and safety gear. You should also factor in any customization or accessories you may want to add to your Vespa.

Luckily Vespa is a quality scooter so you can find a lot of used ones. We have bought many used Vespas and have learned a thing or two about what to look out for. Read this article to avoid mistakes that will make your used Vespa more expensive than you thought.

Engine Size and Power Output

Vespa LX 150cc

Another critical factor to consider when buying a Vespa as a beginner is the engine size and power output. Vespas come in different engine sizes ranging from 50cc up to 300cc. For beginners who are just starting out, it’s advisable to go for smaller engine sizes such as 50cc or 125cc.

Smaller engines have lower power output than larger ones which makes them easier to handle for beginners. Smaller engines require less maintenance and consume less fuel compared to larger engines.

Personal Preferences in Terms of Style and Color

vespa primavera sean wotherspoon makes a very colourful ride
Colors will not only make you visible but will have heads turning

The style and color of your Vespa are also essential factors that you should consider when buying one as a beginner. Vespas come in different styles ranging from classic vintage designs to modern sleek designs.

When choosing the style of your Vespa, it’s crucial to consider your personal preferences and what best suits your personality. The Vespa Sprint is known for its sporty look, while the Vespa Primavera and Vespa LX still hold some of the classic looks from the earlier Vespa models.

Color is also another important consideration when choosing your Vespa. Vespas come in various colors ranging from bright colors like red or yellow to more subdued colors like black or white. When selecting a color, you can consider factors such as visibility and safety. Bright colors are more visible on the road, which can help increase your safety.


I am the co-owner of Vespavirgin. The first Vespa I ever drove was a classic Vespa. Ever since I love taking our Vespa out on sunny days to explore the little countryside roads.

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