Goodnight Saigon

Continental Europe has been largely picked clean of classic scooters. The days of driving your mate’s Ford Transit to Calabria or Lazio and returning with a load of barn-fresh minters are long gone. It’s even been claimed that there are more Lambrettas in the UK now that in Italy. European-built scooters can command a high premium, especially in the US and Australia. People wanting a classic ride get tempted to look much further – India or Vietnam, typically. Scooters from these countries will often have had a very hard life. If you ring a scooter workshop in the UK to book a service, don’t be surprised if the bloke on the phone says: ‘It’s not from Vietnam is it’? And with good reason. There’s a whole industry in the backstreets of Vietnamese cities  knocking out deathtraps that have been prettified to sell to Westerners.  There is, however, a thriving scooter scene in Vietnam – and they do produce some perfectly acceptable (and safe) restorations. I hope the Vespa (a  modified Super) ‘Lucy’ is riding in this beautiful short film falls into the latter category.


About teninchwheels

Designer, photographer and Vespa-fixated pub bore. Born in Yorkshire, living in that London these past 20 years. Get in touch at, especially if you'd like to send me some free beer.
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2 Responses to Goodnight Saigon

  1. Affer says:

    I’m getting old and crabby, Wheels……it’s a smashing little film but, why oh why would anybody ride a scooter in flip-flops? In lands where ‘the rules of the road’ consist of thumbing the hooter as much as possible, why do people think it’s OK to ride in a T-shirt, no gloves and no footwear – whilst ensuring they have a crash helmet? It makes me shiver!

    • Oh indeed – and they do it in London too – saw a good one this morning – Honda Fireblade rider. Armoured jacket, gloves, helmet. So far so good. Then suit trousers and spiked golf shoes with no socks!

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