During 68 years long career, Vespa has been produced in 13 countries and sold in about 20 million copies. Vespa story began as a cheap means of transport and time turned it into an icon of style.
After World War II, Italy lay in ruins. Most of the Italian industry worked for the army, and as the war ended, this market has virtually disappeared. Industrialist and aero engineer Enrico Piaggio had the idea of two-wheeled vehicle that supposed to be cheap and reliable. To create the first specimen of such a vehicle, the chosen one was Corradino D'Ascanio. When the prototype was completed, Piaggio was delighted. Due to design and the sound of its engine they named it Vespa, which means wasp in Italian.
After various tests and additional perfecting, Vespa has entered into production in 1946. Although the idea of a scooter was not new at the time, Vespa, thanks to its ingenious design, from the start managed to break away from the competition. Engine was hidden under the chassis reducing the possibility of soiling the driver with oil and dust. This way the “wasp” has become suitable and
affordable for ladies also.
Popularity of the Vespa grew instantly and quickly outgrew the boundaries of Italy. Piaggio company began to export to many countries of Europe and the world. Its unique design and practicality were the winning combination. However, another factor significantly affected the popularity of the Vespa: Hollywood! Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn rode a Vespa in the film “Holiday in Rome” in 1953. Thousands of young people were willing to follow their example, just to ride and enjoy.
Although it has been more than seventy years since its inception, Vespa has survived. For all these years of service in cities from Los Angeles to Vladivostok, Vespa has gone through 20.000 mechanical changes, in 120 different models, that were sold in almost 20 million copies. Today it is one of the most popular scooters in the world, with an army of fans united in thousands of clubs worldwide.
Previous story has been told because we have found and bought the 1958 model of Vespa VNA 125. The model will be further discussed when fully restored and bring into the state like after leaving the factory back in 1958. In any case, in this section, we will show the pictures of the motorcycle as it was when we bought it, as well as photos of the restoration process.