Review: Vespa GTS 300 ABS by Just Gotta Scoot

Regular readers know that we here at ScooterFile are big fans of David Harrington and Just Gotta Scoot. Whenever Dave has a new scooter review, we love to share it here precisely because of his approach. You see, Dave is an engineer by trade, and so when he reviews a scooter, he does it like an engineer. He breaks down all the specs, all the pragmatic details and all those things that have the most practical impact. Personally, I think specs tell you almost nothing qualitative about what it’s like to ride a scooter, so I really don’t bother with them when I put a review together. Because of this, Dave’s reviews are a terrific compliment to the typically more visceral reviews we share here on ScooterFile.

Dave recently took a spin on the new Vespa GTS 300 ABS, a scooter which we also reviewed recently. You can read our review of the 2015 Vespa GTS 300 Super ABS here. One particularly interesting detail about Dave’s review is that he’s a Vespa GTS 250 owner himself. So he’s able to directly compare this new generation of the GTS with the old.

I had the unusual luck to be able to compare two iterations of the Vespa GTS side-by-side: my own (well, really, my wife’s) GTS 250 and the new GTS 300 Super. Both run and ride very smoothly. They share the Vespa monocoque chassis and the Quasar engine configuration of 4 valves, fuel injection and liquid cooling. So far as engine performance is concerned, I didn’t notice much difference from the “old” 250cc to the “new” 300 (278cc). They are both quite quick off the line and have more than adequate acceleration readily available up to about 55 MPH. To get from 55 MPH up to the top speed takes a bit longer. The GTS 300 is just a touch faster with maybe 3 or 4MPH more than the 250. On surface roads in the 45MPH to 55MPH range, the Vespa GTS is nothing short of wonderful. There’s enough power to keep up with, or stay ahead of, other traffic, and the frame size is just right feeling substantial enough for faster speeds while remaining nimble.

There are two marked differences between the GTS 250 and the GTS 300 Super: suspension and braking. While both offer a smooth ride and nimble handling, the older GTS 250 wallows a bit in the front end and is mushy in spirited curves. The new hinged lower front shock mount gives the GTS 300 Super a crisper and more confidence inspiring ride. The brakes on the GTS 250 (discs front and rear) are wonderful. They are strong and easy to modulate. The new anti-lock brakes and electronic traction control on the GTS 300 Super work but they require higher effort at the levers than the “plain” brakes on the GTS 250. I did run up to modest speeds on low traction surfaces to try out the ABS system and it works. Grab a fist full of levers and the scooter comes to a stop in a pretty straight line with little to no drama.

That’s just a sample. The full review is definitely worth your time. Check out Dave’s complete review over on Just Gotta Scoot.

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