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Vespa by Piaggio


Manufactured in Genoa, Italy

Model: Ciao Type E Super Confort Deluxe Blinkers (C7E)
Year: 1977
Horse Power: 1.5
Transmission: Belt drive, single speed (Pedal via chain)
Ignition: Marelli magneto
Tires: 2” x 17”
Dry Weight: 85.5 lbs (Actual 88 lbs)
Fuel Capacity: 3/4 US Gal.
Gas/Oil Mix: 50:1

Equipment: Sprung front forks & seat, battery powered signals, tool box, tools, air pump, front fork lock
Suggested Retail Price When New: $470

The Piaggio Vespa Ciao Type E Super Confort*(see note #1) Deluxe Blinkers C7E, as the name implies, is one of the more unique mopeds offered in the 1970’s. It debuted in the late 1960's and is still available, virtually unchanged, in Italy and Europe to this day.

The entire design of the Ciao represents a departure from other mopeds – front suspension, belt drive system and overall compact size are very unique. The engine is wedged in between the frame rails with a belt drive located on the left side of the moped. In the (likely) event of engine failure the belt can be disconnected from the motor by pressing a small button on the rear hub, making it the best pedaling moped I have ridden! The front suspension is by cantilevered arms and springs, rear arms are fixed but the seat is sprung. (Later Bravo & Si models have rear suspension)

The moped rides surprisingly well, the suspension does a much better job than I would have thought, but overall it still feels awkward. A big annoyance is the motor's strange wasp like, (Vespa means wasp in Italian), buzzing from the forced air-cooling. Based on their fine heritage I really want to like them, however, the two Vespa mopeds in my collection have been notoriously unreliable - they no longer leave the garage unless accompanied by a mopeding buddy and tow-line.

It seems that parts are readily available from Vespa/Piaggio dealers only if you live in Italy.... Unfortunately the one place I found in the USA who had parts is no longer answering calls or emails. (All the other Vespa scooter dealers I have spoken with don't want to have anything to do with the mopeds) If you do find parts be prepared to spend some time doing most jobs since the design is compact & complicated.

Summary: In a word…. different!

* Note 1: The word "Confort" is right from the manual, not a mistake or spelling error on my part!

 

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