VMoto Scooters Hammersmith
VMoto Monaco 125
I spent a long time trying to come up with a comparison of the VMoto Monaco 125 to something in other industries, something that would give readers a better and more unique angle of where the bike sits in comparison to other scooters. I thought long and hard, I very nearly quit, then they hit me…here are some examples. In the car world the Monaco is the 1990s Mitisbishi GTO, in clothing it’s a Versace shirt, in fruit it would be a cumquat, in electronics…definitely an Apple product and in condoms it’s got to be the equivalent of a ribbed glow in the dark model. You following the theme here? It’s all about flash, style, and lots of high tech but not really entirely necessary features.
The Monaco is a lot of bike for the money…certainly a lot of gizmos and fake carbon fiber for your dollar spent. There’s no question that the target market are going to love the cool extra features and the flash racing looks, however are they going to like everything else? Well yes and no. Like most scooters it really depends on where you buy it; see in some markets the VMoto is very well priced and in others it’s not so well priced and up against some pretty stiff competition.
The Monaco has some very cool features for a bike of its price…hell it’s got cool features for a bike of any price. Does your scooter have remote start? Does your car? Does the space shuttle? I thought not…the Monaco does, oh and an alarm. Yep as you walk up to your bike you simply hit the button on the key fob and wammo…the bike starts. This is probably not something you thought you needed…until you’ve had it, then you need it. It’s a great party trick at the very least. The Monaco also has a rather useful alarm activated off the key fob and to top it off there’s also a digital clock on the dash and an adjustable rear shock. It’s not often you find these sort of features on a 125cc scooter. It’s also not often you’ll find a 125 that’s so slow.
It appears VMoto spent all of their money on gizmos and none on the engine. Okay that’s a bit harsh; the Monaco gets along just fine and will even work on the motorway provided you don’t go near the fast lane. It’s just that in direct comparison to other 125cc bikes it’s definitely on the slow side. To give you an idea, we got 8.9 seconds to 50kph on our test bike which is only a second quicker than a 50cc 1988 Yam...
VMoto Monza 50
Now if you google “Monza”, the first result returned is a Wikipedia reference to a town to the north of Milan, this town surprisingly enough is called Monza and is famous for basically only one thing…The Autodromo Natzionale Monza, or as we know it the racetrack that hosts the Italian Grand Prix. Now I can only assume that when VMoto named the Monza it was so there was a name association that was both sporty and Italian. The downside to this name association game is that were you to actually ride the VMoto Monza around Monza’s Grand Prix circuit the lap would take you approximately 9.6 minutes assuming you didn’t have to brake… this is in comparison to a modern F1 car which will do this very same lap in 1minute 21 seconds. In other words in a race the F1 car would overtake the VMoto approximately 8 times each lap… not really surprising but interesting none the less.
When the VMoto Monza arrived in our driveway at TSR-HQ I got a rather pleasant surprise, you see this machine looked pretty good in the photos on VMoto’s website, unfortunately the images on manufacturer websites seldom reflect the quality of the machines in real life, the Monza had no such problems. It looks very, very good; this beast has much more presence than the majority of 50cc scooters and manages to look sporty and aggressive while standing still. With its carbon fiber style accents, mesh and air intakes it is a picture of racer style. It looks pretty big for a 50 and will appeal more to men than women based strictly on its larger size and higher seat.
So, it looks racy but is it race material…well as far as a restricted 50cc scooter goes it isn’t bad at all, in fact it’s sister model the Matrix won the Queensland “Le Mins” 24hour scooter race in the production category. So yes it goes pretty well for a restricted 50. The Monza manages to make traffic work a breeze with peppy acceleration from a standstill. Hill work, which is always a downfall of restricted 50’s, is surprisingly strong in the Monza. The bad news is that the restrictions are very difficult; some say impossible to remove however there is a performance upgrade kit, which gives the performance a much-needed lift and bypasses these restrictions.