Review: Piaggio Fly 125 3V - Chic and Low Cost Scooter
Posted at 02:00:00 PM
File under Product Review Piaggio Scooters
Author: David Morcrette
Location: Paris, France
Since this is a translation directly from French, some of the colloquialism may seem a bit strange at time, for which I apologize. It's not easy to translate. Any mistakes below are mine, and mine alone.
A chic scooter at a low price
With the Fly, Piaggio gives wings to city scooters and especially to wallets, since the two wheeler is sold for only €2,090 ... a real financial windfall for the 125 cc scooter market, and even more so since the model has a low fuel consumption and a reduced maintenance schedule.
So, a low budget model or a real nice scooter for daily use?
Piaggio have redesigned the Fly's esthetics, proving that a discounted scooter does not necessary rhyme with cheap design or finishing. We therefore find very Italian lines, with nice tight curves and a diving front, as well as the traditional tie, particularly elegant in black on white colors.
The handlebar is adorned with a triangular headlight, surrounded by chrome found at the front and at the dashboard level and up to the exhaust's protectors. At the rear we find a cargo platform as well as chromed handles. Despite a small price, there are two stands, one side and one center.
The finish is neat and the quality plastic fits together perfectly. The colors and the paint are of a high quality, and we are almost surprised to find for this price such a good finish. While all this gives a little scooter in size (approaching physically more a 50 cc than a 125 cc), but very qualitative.
Completely overhauled in 2012, the Fly received a new 125 cc, 4-stroke 3-valve engine, optimized to provide a compromise between power and consumption. A lot of work went into reducing friction and especially fuel consumption, down by 30% over the previous vintage. Maintenance has been simplified since the maintenance schedule went to 10,000 km, with a belt change only every 20,000 km.
In The Saddle
With a low saddle of 760 mm, a 1M70 biker will place feet perfectly on the ground without any problems, which is far from being the case for most 125 cc scooters. We then sit in the overall size of the reduced two-wheeler. The handlebar falls naturally under the hands but everything is close and the larger bikers will no doubt be a little bit cramped. We appreciates however the large flat floor and rounded space at the front allowing for more room than usual for your feet.
Under the eyes we find an analog dashboard reduced to a simple counter that falls perfectly under the eyes, and despite everything, a fuel gauge with a reserve indicator. No partial trip here, but a single totalizer and a digital clock.
The other indicators are standard and we would just regret the absence of a hazard warning.
The Fly snorts with a velvet silence. Now here is a two-wheeler that is discrete and will not wake up the neighborhood. A slight twist of the throttle and the engine reacts immediately. No crazy revs, but the Fly sets off efficiently with an excellent engine response to the slightest touch of the accelerator...as it shows the absence of nervousness, an great reach ... reinforced by a low weight with its 140 kilos fully fueled.
In The City
We have said it and we will say it again, the Fly has more the size of a 50 cc than a 125 cc. With its well positioned mirrors, the scooters goes easily everywhere, helped by a great turning radius; all providing excellent maneuverability at lower speeds. So lane splitting is accomplished dynamically and relatively fast, smooth and effortless. You can ride into any hole in the traffic without stopping in between cars, capable of turning 90° perpendicular to the normal flow of traffic, slowed down and without dismounting. The front is light and agile.
Taking off from a traffic light is not an example for the category but is more than sufficient to extract yourself from the other two-wheelers. And despite this gentleness at the start, you feel a slight lift-off, almost giving the impression that the scooter sits on its rear shock before returning perfectly horizontal. No, it's not a wheely but still...
With its new disc brakes in the front and the rear, braking is at the right level: not to strong nor too little. If after the first kilometers the impression is a bit bland, we rapidly get used to the excellent braking, with especially a good feeling and the necessary power if you don't hesitate to hold the brake lever. You just shouldn't hesitate to pull the lever, strongly. Suddenly, the braking reassures beginners who will not be surprised, leaving the more experienced riders the ability to brake hard and fast, without any bad behavior of the two-wheeler.
On The Motorway
You would think with the relative speed in the city that the Fly would run out of steam on the motorway, but far from it, the Fly accepts to take higher rpm to settle on a good 115 kph on a flat surface (100 real kph), thus faster than many 125 cc scooters. She'll fall back to 105 kph when the road is no longer flat. At those speeds and with the absence of a windshield, the position is comfortable and the handling good, even in a crosswind. The stability offered is surprisingly good for a scooter with such small wheels, which generally results in a little floating at "high speeds". However, depending on the weather, the air stirring at the legs behind the apron are important enough and can significantly cool down your legs relative to the Vespa GTS model, which offers better protection. If the highway is not its preferred field, the Fly will willingly accept to leave the city in order to take the major suburban roads, and will handle well.
On The Country Roads
Naturally, once back on the secondary roads, the scooters finds the good speeds and you will not lose a single license point. Vibration-free at whatever rpm, the Fly will make long journeys without tiring the rider.
Rather pleasant in a daily use, the little 12 inch wheels and its rear monoshock quickly show the limits on paved streets, and even more so when riding with a pillion. Then we can feel pretty well the defects of the road, without saying that it is really bad. The suspensions are just a little dry. It is the pillion who will suffer, especially with the allotted tip of saddle . Let's say that the Fly is located in the average with regards to the 125 cc comfort level, neither more or less.
After filling up several times, the consumption settles at 3.3 liters for 100 kilometers on average. With a fairly accurate gauge throughout the use (despite a sensitivity to elevation changes), the fuel tank drops to half after 90 km. The reserve indicator goes on at 150 km, therefore allowing with its 7 liters a global range of 210 kilometers in a mixed urban riding.
The front apron hides two side storage spaces, enough to store a pair of gloves.
The trunk offers more space, capable of carrying two open-face helmets, but you would need to force it a bit to store an integral full-face helmet (difficult to store a flip-up helmet). Suddenly, the topcase is a real plus, especially since it fits perfectly with the general line of the scooter, with a color perfectly incorporating the metallic white bodywork.
The kickstand is practical in daily use, stopping the engine when deployed. As for the placing it on its center stand, this is done with two fingers: a model for its kind.
Chic, stylish, easy to use, certainly the Fly is not a great warrior but has an excellent reach, the scooter is more than a 125cm3 scooter. So, it becomes very pleasant in everyday use and you become attached to it very fast. Aesthetics and finish are there, it will delight those who want a small and cheap but quality scooter, faithful and practical for urban or suburban use without worries.
|Strong Points||Weak Points|
- Engine reach
- Spacious floor space
- Dry suspension
- Tires on the wet
Via: Le Repaire des Motards