Vespa is an Italian brand of scooter manufactured by Piaggio. The name means wasp in Italian.
The Vespa has evolved from a single model motor scooter manufactured in 1946 by Piaggio & Co. S.p.A. of Pontedera, Italy—to a full line of scooters and one of seven companies today owned by Piaggio—now Europe’s largest manufacturer of two-wheeled vehicles and the world’s fourth largest motorcycle manufacturer by unit sales.
From their inception, Vespa scooters have been known for their painted, pressed steel unibody which combines a complete cowling for the engine (enclosing the engine mechanism and concealing dirt or grease), a flat floorboard (providing foot protection), and a prominent front fairing (providing wind protection) into a structural unit.
This was the most popular Vespa with the young. It was brilliant and easy to handle, with attractive, exclusive styling that derives from the line of larger Vespa models. Ever since its first appearance on the market in 1963, it is advertised by Piaggio as young, modern, and without licensing documents needed. With the 1963 Rules of the Road, no numberplate nor licenseplate are required even for fourteen years old. The engine is completely new, with the cylinder positioned at a 45 degree angle and no longer horizontal. This was the last scooter to be designed by Corradino D’Ascanio, and it is a milestone in the history of Vespa: from 1964 to the present day, over 3 million have been built.