VESPA T5 (BM-223)
The 80's were a wild time. In the design world, boxy shapes and square edges were the "in" thing. In the scooter world, the Japanese manufacturers were a serious challenge to the Vespa's market dominance in Europe. One of the ways that Piaggio responded, was by modifying the venerable Vespa P-series to make it seem more in keeping with the times. The result, was the T5. It had quite a few interesting features. On the body, it had a cut-down front fender, a plastic air spoiler under the legshield, a small plastic tray on top of the glovebox, a squared-off tail section, a large seat, and a new headset design. The new headset was much larger than the standard P-series, and included a large speedometer and one feature that appeared on no other Vespa - a tachometer! The T5's changes did not end there, and they also included a special hot-rod engine. In Europe, the 125cc class was extremely important, since in many countries, the drivers license is limited by motor size. The T5 made the most of its 125cc's by having a 5 port cylinder, which was unique to this model. These motors really sing! They accelerate as fast, if not faster than the 200cc Vespas.
These scooters were never sold in the US, since Piaggio had stopped selling scooters here by the time of the T5 debut. In fact, we've only seen a handful of them. This one is certainly the nicest that we have seen. It is just so much fun to ride, tight, smooth, and quick. Even in Europe, the T5's are not easy to find, and certainly, they are rare in this condition. This is one of the all-time great Vespas.