Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

What makes a scooter a scooter?

Discussion in 'Scooters' started by emsie, Jun 1, 2007.

  1. So I was looking at the sachs 50 and 125cc bikes and going "yeah they're cool for kickabout bikes" and I ducked into one of the recent threads, having remembered someone posting a picture of the Gilera DNA scooters and them looking like bikes.

    I looked around at the Gilera scooters and I've decided I think they look awesome :) They don't have the foot recess which is what I don't like about regular scooters and they're actually (to me) a really good looking bike - obviously little and serve the purpose that scooter would normally serve.

    At this point I'm wondering what makes a scooter a scooter? We've now taken away the foot recess which typically said "this is a scooter" but it's still called a scooter. So what makes it a scooter? I'd say small engine but that doesn't fit when you have the Burgmans. I'd say foot recess but that doesn't fit with the Gilera DNAs. So what is it? :)[/url]
  2. There's no real answer and it's a matter of personal opinion or marketing as to call something a scooter or not.

    Generally, it is smaller wheels than motorcycles, have a step through frame, the engine is under the seat near the rear wheel, engine is encased in the bodywork, legshields, small physical size.

    There are always scooters who break some of those definitions and still be scooters. So it's probably the best combination of most of those definitions that defines a scooter.

    There will always be arguments about what constitutes a scooter.
    For me, the DNAs and similar are not scooters but automatic geared motorbikes.
    The same goes for the so called maxi-scooters. To me and lots of traditionalists, they are not scooters at all. They are automatic geared tourer bikes. Yet they still haunt the scooter boards and turn up to rallies. :? But that's just my opinion. :)
  3. Yeah ok fair call .. the DNAs mention helmet storage - only place I can see to store a helmet is in what would be a fuel tank on any other bike. Forgot about the gearing too - that makes sense. The wheels seem to be smaller on the DNAs - fits into that criteria too.

    Nice explanation, thank you :)
  4. Apparently the answer to the OP is

    Whatever 'real' riders disapprove of' . [​IMG]
  5. rule of thumb is : if it looks ghey, then it's a scooter
  6. Well other then "the look" which clearly is a bit fuzzy with the gilera i'd say scooters are 'generaly' either automatic or cetrifical clutch.

    Interestingly what we genericaly now call a scooter used to be called a "step through" scooter as it was diferent to a "pedal" scooter or just a scooter (like the postie)
  7. This has come up before. The postie bikes are step through's not scooters.

    And the Cub 50's (which I had one of... a _long_ time ago) aren't true scooters either (although at first glance they look like one).

    There are step through bikes, and step through scooters but they aren't the same thing. And likewise it's possible to have a scooter that isn't a step through.

    The defining difference is simply the location of the engine.
  8. Realy?? who says so?? and if so where is the engine on a scooter compared to a bike?
  9. A scooter is where when you open the exahust can, the bee's escape! :p

  10. So what is this then? and why?

  11. A scooter motor is located under the seating area.

    With a step through like the C50/C100/C70/C90 and postie bikes it is centrally located.

    Who says so?

    The people who are correct :LOL:
  12. A high level step through. The motor is centrally located.
  13. No, it is a scooter, practically and legally. In WA you can ride it on a car license, but a 50cc Honda Cub you cannot, its a motorcycle.
  14. Balderdash (i could so link this the the god debate thread) who are these people that go around spouting unsubstansiated clap trap.
    I can find not 1 referance to motor location.
    From Wikipedia
    A scooter is a two-wheeled motor vehicle with a step-through frame. Many modern scooters have their engines located forward of the seat and affixed to the frame

    A usually two-wheeled vehicle with small wheels and a low-powered gasoline engine geared to the rear wheel.

    a cycle with small wheels and a low-powered gasoline engine geared to the rear wheel
  15. The fact that the original meaning of the terms have been perverted does not invalidate the original meaning.

    It just means that the misuse is widespread :)
  16. Well, i'm waiting for something to substaciate your statement, without some sort of referance it's worthles.
    at this stage it's just 'your' opinion and means nothing i'm afraid.

    Oxford English Dictionary
    • noun 1 (also motor scooter) a light two-wheeled motorcycle. 2 any small light vehicle able to travel quickly across water or snow. 3 a child’s toy consisting of a footboard mounted on two wheels and a long steering handle, propelled by pushing one foot against the ground.
  17. It seems that here in Australia it's quite simple really, we don't actually have any road legal petrol powered scooters at all, they would not be able to be ADR'd. Only vehicles with less than 200W are legally scooters, everything else is a "motor vehicle" and dealt with under each state's moped regs, at least up to 50cc, auto, and 60kph.

    Scooters with small motors are becoming more popular as a means of
    transport and recreation. Those that have motor power output of more than
    200 Watts (W) are regarded as “mopeds†under the Federal Motor Vehicle
    Standards Act and as a consequence need to be certified to comply with
    the appropriate Australian Design Rules. All jurisdictions have vehicle
    standards based on the Australian model regulations known as the
    “Australian Vehicle Standards Rules 1999â€, which define “motor vehiclesâ€
    as vehicles with a power output in excess of 200 watts. As a consequence
    these vehicles must be registered as motor vehicles [under jurisdictions’
    registration legislation] and riders are required to hold an appropriate
    licence if they are to be used on roads.
  18. Best distinction between the two (and I forget the source) is that unlike a motorcycle or step-thru a scooter does not have any mechanical components between the riders legs/feet.
  19. Don't ask Loz about what you ride then... :p
  20. Correct JD :)