FrontRunners: The Latest Buzz
The Vespa 946 (www.vespaUSA.com, www.Vespa-Canada.ca), the brand’s first all-new model in six years, evokes the prototype from 1946 that the Italian industrialist Enrico Piaggio’s namesake company built when he requested a simple vehicle that he could ride without dirtying his clothes. Piaggio thought the resulting two-wheeled scooter resembled a wasp (vespa in Italian), thus the name. The 946, which will go on sale in the United States and Canada in November, is priced at just under $10,000. It is built in Italy and features hand-stitched leatherlike seats and grips, a steel-and-aluminum body, an upgraded 150 cc three-valve monocylinder engine, and an LCD control panel.