Saturday, September 24, 2011

New Lamps For Old

I had no idea Yamaha had produced a new style of Zuma motor scooter. This is the old "regular" 50cc...


...and this is the newer looking one I came across parked on Wall Street. The differences are subtle.


The way I can tell the 125cc model (which requires a motorcycle endorsement in Florida) from the 50cc, is that the bigger Zuma has guards covering the handlebar grips.


The newer model of 50 has a clunkier rear end in my opinion, as shown above compared to the old model below.


And a rather odd instrument pod...


...compared to the clean lines of the older edition:


The new Zuma has a sensible tank filler cap on the floorboards, an elegant solution that puts the weight of the fuel down low on the bike and makes access to the filler cap much easier than under the seat or under the luggage rack on the earliest models.


The disc brakes on the front wheels look as close to identical as a casual glance could suggest though I do like the red trim on the new version, though I don't know how long the paint will last in that vulnerable spot.


The older scooter has been well used which is not surprising as Zumas are as much admired for their sturdy performance as they are for their style in cost conscious Key West.


I owned an early model for a while, induced to try one thanks to it's enviable reputation and popularity.


However I found the steering geometry too tight and my wife thought the Zuma was so squirrelly it was impossible to ride. We sold it after three months at no loss to a keen new owner. I am sure the new model will be just as popular as ever in this town.

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2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I ride a 2004 Zuma 50 and the loss of the foot rest area is a bad thing. I use it to carry my tackle box among other things. I even took my propane tank for a refill resting perfectly on the floor. I'm sure I won't be the only one not liking this change. Scooter Vic

Conchscooter said...

Actually I hadn't thought of that, but you're right, there is now a tunnel down the foot rest area. Manufacturers should leave well enough alone!
Except I do like the new Suzuki V-strom. The old one was fugly, the new one looks really nice in pictures.