Side-by-side comparison of two different touring scooters - the Vespa 300 GTS and the Piaggio BV 400 Now, both of these scooters are really great for long trips, but they each have their own unique advantages. So which one is right for you? Well, that's what I'm here to help you figure out.

Hi everybody it's Peter, and in this video we're gonna talk about touring scooters. And we have two options here which we can go over in detail. And I've done individual videos on each of these bikes. So if you wanna know more about, you have a couple of options. First of all, you can check out those other videos that I've done to go in depth to some of the things that I won't touch on on this video. But if you have questions about either of these vehicles, let me know in the comments below because I'm filming here at  Jim Gilbert's Power Sports, where they give me complete access to their entire vehicle lineup and I can make sure that I come back to your questions in the comments section and in future video. So let's get going. This is the BV 400, it's a Piaggio scooter, and that is a Vespa, technically also a Piaggio scooter, that's the Vespa GTS Super Tech.

From here you can watch Peters Video by clicking YouTube or read his transcript... enjoy...

Both of these scooters are filled with tech. Both of them are fully highway capable. These are not just in town around town type scooters. They can go out on the open road. This one has a little extra accessories, we'll talk about that. You can get accessories on the other one as well. And each of them are well suited to different types of riding. But more importantly, these are scooters where you can go long distance and tour on. So we're gonna talk about the types of touring that each of these would be best at and we're gonna give a little bit of love to the Beverly. This is not known as the Beverly in North America, it's just the BV 400, but throughout the world it is known as that. And throughout the world, this is a fairly popular scooter. But the reason I'm doing this video is to throw a little shade on the Vespa. 
I love the Vespa and this one outsells this one here in Fredericton  New Brunswick at  Jim Gilbert's Power Sports. But that one is good for a couple specific things and this one can do a few things more. So we're gonna get a little extra love to this bike because like I said, I think it deserves a little more respect and sometimes we give it. So let's get going with the full comparison review. So the first thing I'm gonna do is just hop on these scooters so you can see the size comparison because a lot of people see this Vespa and they confuse it for the 50 cc or one 50 cc models. This one is much larger, but it's not as large as the BV 400. So both of these scooters are equipped with side stands and that's what they're on right now.

They also have center stand, standard center stands standard. So you can also, uh, stand up with that. Now scooters can appear to be fairly tall because of a fairly wide seat. If you're shorter, you can just stand a little forward. Uh, but I'm gonna sit sort of where I'm comfortable here and you can see I'm flatfooted and easy if I sit in the riding position, my right foot up there, you can see very square here. Now, couple benefits to a scooter like this virtual of all the style, we're gonna talk about that a little bit later in the video. You've got lots of leg room here and because of the way the seat is, even though it curls up there is kind of where the seat is curled up and how far back I could sit. But you can easily sit forward and be just as comfortable. 
You could stretch a little bit further back because it's relatively level. If you just wanted to stretch out on a longer ride, you do have that option on this seat because again, right behind my rear end here, it's only a slight lip. It's not too much. But overall size, very good. If you wanted a windshield on this, you can get that as an accessory. If you wanted a rear rack, you could get that as an accessory. But let's just jump across to the BV 400 right now. Jumping across here, couple of things that are different, a little bit taller tunnel to to step across. This bike is also a little bit heavier. Now it's not unreasonably he heavy, it's got the weight down low. There's a whole bunch of regions that does that. But you can see when I put my seat back, I am up against a taller lip here behind, um, behind where I am here.

So my ability to move back on this one is a little bit more limited overall, the width seems similar, maybe a tiny bit wider at the front flip pegs because this one curls in where my legs are. So putting my legs straight down, I've got some extra ability to go nice and tight to the bike here, but there's a little bit less room to stretch out. That being said, this is a fairly tall windshield and it's very close to where I am. This is standard equipment on this bike. So obviously that's gonna have some advantages for taking the wind off yourself at a higher speed. So a little more precise seating position here where a little bit more flexibility on the Vespa. But yeah, that's kind of a seating position and it is a difference between these two bikes. So let's start by looking at the Vespa GTS 300.
Now this happens to be a super tech. The super Tech has a different dash here, but you can get this in various things like the super sport or other kinds. Again, if you're planning on touring with this, you can get a back rack here, which has a backrest. I'll show you a picture of what that looks like on a super sport that we have in stock here as well right now. So you can see that on your screen. But then you also have, uh, the seat here and again, windshield you could put on there as well. So Vespa is limited in some ways by their classic lines. Now personally I'm a huge fan of the style of this. I think it looks like the classic small Vespa, but obviously it is larger, but it does not stay stuck in time. It's still a fully modern vehicle


So where the BV 400 is gonna have a frame with body work, part of the frame of this is quite visible here on this to for that rigidity, you do have an L e D headlight here, have an L e D headlight on that one. Uh, the round mirrors here are sort of the throwback style, but something should be said about round mirrors. They're, uh, both the wide angle. So they say objects and mirror are closer than they, than they appear. Both of them will have those wide angle mirrors, but the styling of these round ones say what you want about fancy style mirrors. These round ones are still pretty good for visibility. So overall you've got, uh, that I do wanna show you, uh, the passenger seating accommodations here because this is gonna make a difference in your touring ability of a bike like this.

So again, we're gonna hop on, we're on the center stand now, so I can do this relatively safely, but you can see here when I put my feet on the foot pegs back here and I sit back here on the rear seat, this is a little bit of a smaller rear seat and the foot pegs are necessary because my heels come a little bit out. I'm against the body work here and you know, it is what it is. So if you are touring on this type of scooter, it's probably a little better suited to single person touring than the BV 400. Now that doesn't mean that you can't take this two people touring. It absolutely is capable of that. Uh, but to me you have a 300 cc engineer, a 400 cc engineer. The BV 400 is class leading power, both in horsepower and in torque.

It's stepped up from what used to be a three 50 to a 400, whereas this 300, again, it, it's moved its way up over the generations as well. But this 300 is still a little bit down on power to that bike. Now this is a little bit lighter, so you have that power to weight ratio as well, but you still have better power to weight ratio on that bike. So again, can you tour with two people? Absolutely. To me, if I'm touring with two people, although you'll still be able to keep up on a interstate or a major freeway type highway, this is a bike that is better suited to those country roads touring. And to me, I would prefer to tour as a just a single rider on something like this because you have a little bit more comfort with the space behind you and with the engine.
So again, can you tour? Absolutely. Now, the benefit of touring on a scooter is not just the overall protection here. If it gets rainy or wet or whatever, you've got your legs protected here with a taller windscreen up here, you're gonna have your body protected from both wind and weather and like cool weather especially. But it's also twist and go. There's no gear shifting to be done. No clutch lever, no gear shift, it's twist and go. It's simple, simple, simple to ride so you can really enjoy what's going on around you. And that's a big benefit to touring on a scooter. It's super simple. It's got some of that practicality of a touring bike built in. If you look at the big huge touring bikes that are out there, the massive ccs, you know, they're not very nimble, they're not great once they get to town, but they do have things like wind protection and all that built in just like this.

So you can tour on a scooter. Now let's just take the same position we have here and we'll throw ourselves on the BV 400 and talk about some of those features as well. So moving to the BV 400, this is a much larger bike. The first thing you're gonna notice is the larger wheels. Now it looks even more exaggerated because you can see the entire front wheel. This is a 16 inch front wheel. So a modern sport bike tire, the diameter across the rim would be 17 inches. This is a 16 inch and it's got good width, certainly much larger than the Vespa 300 that we just showed you in the back. It is not a 16 inch wheel, it's a smaller wheel. It's a 14 inch diameter wheel in the back, but again, much wider than the Vespa. For reference, the Vespa has 12 inch wheels. So bigger wheels are gonna give you probably some more stability. And again, it's not limited by style, it allows itself to be something fresh, something new. So sitting on here, again, we're gonna sit just in the driver's position here. You still have the foot pegs that pop out and they come out like that. So a little bit less fancy design, I can't quite reach it. These ones are rubber mounted on here as well. We're on the center stand, so we're gonna jump
Over here and put our feet on the pedal. Now again, this one has the backrest on because it has a top bunk, you can get that on the vessel as well. My feet position is a little bit better, so my, my heels are not pressed against the body work. I have some ability to move a little bit here I am very upright, but that's fine. And there's still plenty of space for the rider. The other nice thing here is I'm sitting taller than the rider, significantly taller up. So if you were similar in height, you could see over. Now most people are passengers, oftentimes shorter than them and uh, then you're still looking around, but you still have a better overall seating position from the passenger. So rear passenger space is good. We'll put these back with my feet. There we go. Sitting here again, those wide angle mirrors are here.

These are a smaller mirror. So although they're perfectly positioned in great visibility, they are a little bit smaller than the vespas. So gonna give the Vespa the wind on mirrors. As far as the windshield here, again, I mentioned very large, very close, kind of equal on both as well because you've got the ability. Now this one is built into this without having to pay any extra from the factory. You just get it, it comes like that. The dash we're gonna talk about in a second. They both have good digital dashes. The Vespas probably a little bit more stylish, but it's just because I pulled the Super Tech. If you had the super sport, it's gonna have a little bit more of a basic dash. But again, we'll talk about that as we get there. You're gonna notice more buttons here and more modern buttons. We'll show you those as well. 
But there's some connectivity things you can do here, um, with your modes. Uh, both of them have uh, track or both of 'em have abs. This one's got traction control as well. The overall seating position on this, it feels much more like a touring bike. You still have that wind protection and those kind of things, but the seating position and everything else feels closer to a touring bike. So if you are going with a second person, this one's gonna give you more space. If you are going on a longer trip, I think this one's probably gonna be a little bit more comfortable for that on a longer trip, especially with the bigger wheels, a little bit more power as well. And again, highway capable, not an issue on this. We always look at motorcycles on a 400 cc motorcycle would be a smaller motorcycle, but the way things are geared can really depend.This is not gonna accelerate as fast as something like a Ninja 400, but it's also gonna be fairly comfortable out on the highway. Whereas you know, the Ninja 400 is gonna have six gears manual transmission that you're gonna roll through this one. Same thing as the Vespa, it's twist and go super simple. So let's take a look at the dash. Let's take a look at some of the storage compartments on these and help you decide which one works for you. So taking a look at the dash on here, to get to this dash, you have to use the keyless entry. Now it has a switch for the ignition, but this is a keyless entry type key, much like your car. So we'll show you the switch instead of a push button start. It's kind of a, a dial knob that you turn just like a key, but it's just a knob. Show you that a little bit later. This dash is very, very motorcycle like to me. So of course you have your fuel gauge, your range, your temp outside temperature, you've got a time, uh, uh, kilometers on here. You've got temperature gauge and you have a tachometer. Now a tachometer is not something you traditionally need On something that you don't have to shift gears for yourself, but it does give you a sense of how hard the engine is working. So of course if it's revving like way up, then you know that maybe you're, you know, pushing it harder than you want or sometimes you know, into the wind or that kind of thing. So it really gives you kind of the information you need as a touring bike. And again, just a black and white dash, but it is a digital system that works quite well. So lots more features we could show you here. We'll probably save that for another video, uh, if you're interested. So let me know in the comments if you're interested in seeing more of the dash on either of these. You've got the asr, we're gonna show you some of those buttons right there. It's flashing up here. 
We're gonna show you the left side controls and talk about that right now. So that flashing ASR light is right here. That's part of your traction control. So I didn't turn the bike fully on, uh, but this is basically an anti-slip system so you can uh, turn that on and off or toggle it, toggle it on and off from your, um, from your uh, handlebars here. This is the left side handlebar on a motorcycle. There would be a clutch in front of here, but this is actually your break. So just like a bicycle, that would be your rear brake on uh, this one here. And then you've got a little button here to pop your fuel door, a button here to pop the seat. You've got your high beams, which you can just flash to pass. And again, those are l e D lights and then you can lock in your high beam as well.
So whatever you wanna do there, signal lights there, nice, easy to control left, right and turn it on and off. And then you've got the horn down there. So simple motorcycle controls, everything's within reach, but good feeling switch here and fairly large buttons. I don't know if it's sort of easy to see, but you've got good size buttons here. That's just easy to get to. We're gonna switch to the other side now and show you the controls over there. So right side handlebar, this is your throttle, that's just how you make it go. There's no gear shifting, no clutch on the other hand, no nothing. Just twist and go. So super simple hazard lights up here. Some cell phone connectivity down here. Uh, kill switch, which is required by every motorcycle. A mode to cycle through some of the modes in the dash, like I said, if you wanna see that, we can make another video of that.
And the start button. And of course your brake lever right out here, that's exactly the same as a regular motorcycle. So simple, easy to use controls, very simple bike to use, but still sort of an advanced bike overall. Take a look at the Vespa gts. Now remember this is the Super Tech. So this has a digital display screen here, which we're gonna show you in a second, but before we do, we'll show you the key. This is a traditional key, so you have that. Now the super tech that I'm showing you is, uh, like I said, shows this digital screen, so we'll just turn it to the on position. You can see that screen come to life there even through the glare. I sort of left the glare in the corner. You can see that even in like intense glare from the studio lights here, you can still see that screen through. (14:25
In fact, you can even see it better than the warning lights. Now in person of course glare isn't as bad as when you're filming. There's a number of features in this, um, display screen as well that we can go through. And we'll probably say that also for another video. But you've got your basic, your outside temperature, uh, clock in there, your speedometer and you can have various settings down here, um, for your, um, uh, times other stuff, fuel efficiency, all kinds of stuff. So you have a number of settings in there that you can go through. The super tech is the one that gives you this display screen. This the regular super sport bike. So same engine, um, it is just the traditional gauge cluster, so it's much less. I could have showed you that one, but again, to be as fair in the comparison as I can, this would be sort of the competitive screen. 
Now this one is certainly more pleasing to look at as far as the color screen and uh, those kind of things, but I don't know that it gives you any advantage one way or the other. The other screen is still very good. And again, without a tachometer in here, you don't really need one again on anything that you don't have to shift gears, but the other one does give you a sense of how hard the engine's working. This one, you're just gonna be able to have to decide that with your ears. So when we talk about listening to these bikes, they are both fairly quiet, they're both very, uh, sort of emissions friendly. Euro five compliant for sure on the BV 400, I think this is at least Euro four or Euro five here on the Vespa. But I'm showing you this little, uh, tailpipe there and the exhaust here because you can sort of see comparison wise, this is not a huge tailpipe, it's a single exhaust here.
The BV 400 really goes with a much more motorcycle style look, which we'll show you right now. So the BV 400, it is a large exhaust and it's actually a dual exhaust. You can sort of see the two there. Now they are a single cylinder, uh, scooter. So it's not like it has two cylinders to exhaust, that kind of thing, but you have a dual exhaust there. Again, they're not necessarily tied down to a certain look or a certain style, so they can give you a little different, uh, feel there and uh, that's how you get to that sort of emissions compliance and that kind of thing. It's a styling decision that they make at some point as well. And uh, I don't hate it, but it is definitely a very large exhaust. It looks just sort of plastic panel from the side. So it's not like it's the end of the world, but uh, it's certainly a big design piece when you look at it from the right hand side of the scooter. 
We're gonna talk about storage in a second, but I wanna show you the wheels here. Now the Vespa, of course, is open on this side. This one has the, uh, fork tubes on both sides. You can see the brakes here are much larger to go along with the larger wheels. You've just basically have a higher speed capable vehicle here, uh, with those very large brakes and the fairly large tires here as well. So just give you a look there. You still, even though you have the tube down here, you still get a pretty good look at the wheels. Let's check out the Vespa side of things right now. Over here on the Vespa, you've got that traditional Vespa style. So the whole suspension setup is on the other side, a little bit smaller disc breaks through there, but you do get to see the entire wheel here. 
Uh, both of these have very good, very capable tires, but you can see the difference here. This is a 12 inch diameter, that one was a 16. So there is absolutely a difference there. Now when you're riding, I want, don't wanna say this is poor riding in any way. This is a still a very good, very capable, very stable vehicle because of the way it's designed, the stiffness of the frame. But larger tires are used on most motorcycles for a reason. And uh, you know, adventure bikes go with a 19 inch front, uh, diameter wheel. So the more off-road and bumpier terrain you're gonna have, usually you want a little bit larger wheel. So it's just something to keep in mind. Um, again, I love, I think they ride great, but the Beverly, the BV 400 is designed for a little bit more high speed as well as potentially a little bit more advantages in larger bumps. 
So if we're gonna talk about these as touring motorcycles, I think the Vespa is best suited as a day tour with its undereat stores. Now again, this is much larger undersea storage than on the, uh, typical Vespa. So you do have quite a bit of space. You could fit sort of three quarter face helmets in here and that's gonna be your sort of day-to-day storage. Now if you're actually touring for any length of time, you're going to want to add the back, uh, top box, which again, we show it in the video on the BV 400, but it's an option there. It's the same thing. It's an option here. One thing to keep in mind is this undersea storage is directly above the engine there and there's no extra insulation or anything in here. This is just a sort of a easy to clean type uh, box. 
I don't believe it comes out on the BB 400. We'll double check that, but it does come out here. But something to keep in mind is because it's above your engine, it is not a cool place to store things. So you're gonna have to keep that in mind. If you have things you need to keep cool, uh, you may want that top box even just for that reason. But again, lockable storage here, great, uh, place. And if you have a full face helmet that you want to carry along with this bike and it's not gonna fit fully in here, there's a little uh, tab right there. You can sort the D-ring over there, shut the seat and the, the helmet can hang off the side of the bike. So you still have a way to lock the helmet to the bike, even if it's a full face helmet and it won't fit perfectly underneath there. 
Take a look at the BV 400, we've got the lights on right now. That's okay. Inside is another light here. So you do have a little advantage here with a little lighted storage area. This does appear to me to be wider. There is no way to come in and outta here. You have a toolbox or a tool kit sitting right here at the very front and because of the sort of the way the engine sits and the larger rear wheel, you do have a little bit of an intrusion there with that larger rear wheel. So what you gain in overall, uh, you know, riding capability or riding pleasure I suppose in that larger rear wheel, it does dig into potential storage here. Now both of these are pretty big. Again, I think it's larger. I haven't checked the volume of each of these out. Uh, but again, volume's gonna be good in both. 
But again, you're really gonna probably want a top box for those overnight tours and that's why this one comes equipped with that. Wanna address the lighting on both these bikes really briefly because both these bikes are turned to the on position but not running. Now on these smaller Vespa scooters, there are, there are usually three L e d lights in here as daytime running lights and you have your signals up here. As you can see here, we've got signals down there and they are incandescent signals here. I can't flash the high beam or run the uh, headlight for you unless I start it up and because we're indoors, I'm not gonna do that right now. But this is a bright white L e D light over on the BV 400. I also have it running and although they don't show very well on camera, these are very bright daytime running lights down here. And you have l e D signals right over here. This one does allow me to flash that high beam there, which you can probably see a little bit in your camera is also very bright, very, And of course that whiter light on both of these bikes allows your brain to sort of see things the way they would normally see them in daylight. That white l e d light is not only cleaner and whiter and a lot of people prefer that. It also is something that is closer to daylight in color, which means as you see things along this road, whether it's a rock or a rabbit or something like that, you're gonna be able to identify it very quickly because your brain is used to seeing things in that type of color of light. So those are very good headlights on both these bikes. Really no advantage on either one. They both had that L E D I do like the L e D signal lights, although I don't know if that makes a huge difference. You know, it just does look a little bit different. 
So we titled this video and we started talking to our both these as touring scooters and I stand by that and the Vespa is the one that people sort of step up to and say, Hey, this is a real motorcycle replacement for me. This one is well known. To be fair, we're our own worst enemies here. We have buried this bike deeper in our showroom. It's probably not advertised as much as the Vespa, but this is the better scooter for those types of touring type things. Now I love the Vespa look and to me, I would absolutely do sort of weekend long day trips on this. You could go overnight absolutely, but again, probably as a single person, when you start getting into taking a lot of extra luggage and a little bit of extra weight, perfectly fine to take two people around on a Saturday afternoon, Saturday morning, head to some coffee shops and a whole bunch of small towns stop for some pizza, that kind of thing. 

This is fantastic for that. However, it just can't be ignored that this bike is better at all of those things and it allows you to go further distances. It allows you to take more gear, more people, it has more power, a little bit, probably better information on the dash that tachometer, again, not something you need for a kind of, you're around town driving, but if you were doing extended driving on the highway, knowing roughly how hard you're working that engine is something worth knowing. Having the standard windshield, uh, is nice. Again, backrest you can do on both these. It just depends on what you want to do. But every time I come back to this scooter, I'm impressed with it purely from its features. Usually you don't buy a vehicle just based on spec sheet alone. You have some sort of connection to it that you just, you generally like it and that's why Vespa sells so well.
It's hard not to like a Vespa 300 GTS vs. Piaggio BV 400 Beverly is probably better equipped as that touring scooter. So if you are considering a motorcycle, two-wheel transportation where you can do some weekend trips, some day-to-day stuff, and of course use these every day, both of these are gonna be very good in the wheels and deals lineup here. Probably the only motorcycle that would compare with these would be the versus X 300. It's also a 300 cc motorcycle. It is a six speed transmission. It's gonna rev a lot. It is a manual transmission, but it does come with available side luggage and it is a smaller CC bike that is capable of touring. Again, on that bike, probably best is a single person tourer, which again shows the versatility of something like this very versatile bike. And again, tell me if you're touring on your Vespa or you're touring on the BV 400, let me know what your experience is like if you own either of these. And again, if you wanna see more videos, make sure you let me know when the comments because here at Jim Gilberts PowerSports I can come back to these vehicles again and again. So thanks everybody for watching and uh, we'll talk to you in the next one.

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