MotoUSA’s scooter scribe takes the Genuine Buddy 170i for a spin. See photos in the Genuine Buddy 170i Scooter Review photo gallery. Read the full report in the Genuine Buddy 170i Scooter Review.
- The seat pops open from the ignition lock, revealing the fuel filler and a storage bin that's about big enough for a smaller full-face helmet.
- Understated, European-inspired styling sets the Buddy apart from its buddies.
- Genuine Buddy 170i.
- Buddy motor looks a lot like similar Piaggio powerplants. Convergent evolution or reverse engineering?
- Rear suspension is a colorful red-springed non-adjustable monoshock.
- Underseat storage is ample for most full-face helmets.
- Sure, riders over 5'8" or so may be slightly cramped, but if you're smaller it's pretty comfortable, offering a relaxed and natural riding position.
- Twist the retro-chic brown right grip and the Buddy zips forward. I found fuel delivery spot-on, and the gear ratios and variator weights blend off-the-line pep, hill-climbing power and top end.
- The Buddy is an able handler on twisty roads, with quick steering and lots of lean angle.
- You may have heard that San Francisco has steep hills – it's true – but the Buddy 170i will squirt up any of them like a salmon leaping upstream.
- My wife and I liked the Oxford Green with white stripe enough to think about getting one into our garage.
- The design and equipment could fool you into thinking PGO was still building Piaggio-designed scooters. The drive unit looks like a Vespa's, as does the general layout of controls and instruments.
- Passenger accommodations – footrests and seating – are there, but barely adequate.
- White-wall tires and tasteful use of chrome add class.
- The styling is killer, classy but not cheesy.
- There's a fuel gauge but no trip odometer – too bad!