Poll – What to call a 250cc+ Scooter

Tue, Jun 26, 2007


I’ve always referred to them as Maxi-Scooters, but I’m starting to see people calling them Super Scooters. I’m wondering if the US contingent is trying to produce a paradigm shift here? Perhaps to avoid having their scooters be confused with another type of Maxi. I dunno.

What do you say?


35 Responses to “Poll – What to call a 250cc+ Scooter”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I definitely wouldn’t call it a motorcycle. If you’ve ever spent time on a motorcycle, it is obvious that a Maxi scooter has more in common with a 50cc scooter.

    My definition of a scooter is the engine being part of the swingarm. :-)


  2. Steve Says:

    Indeed. The “motorcycle” option is more of a miscellaneous option. You know you’ve heard someone say “400cc!? That’s not a scooter that’s a motorcycle!”


  3. Bob Copeland Says:

    The scooter crowd seems to group into either large frame 250cc and above, and small frame below 250cc.
    The small frame lovers are usally younger, bold and dashing around the urban scene. The large frame scooters (max-scooters) are older folks, like cruisng backroads out of the urban sceen into the country. I recently traded my 150cc Aprilia scoot for a 400cc Suzuki Burgman. Maxi-Scooterman.


  4. Anonymous Says:

    My Silver Wing is a motor scooter. Even the Nevada Title says it is.



  5. Eric Link Says:

    I think more than cc goes into the designation. My Vespa GT60 is 250cc, but it’s just a scooter to me. I have vintage scooters also, and to me the GT60 feels more like a p200 or px than a motorcycle. Granted it’s a bit heavier and faster, but it also looks like a regular scooter. I guess if it was 750cc my argument would be that it’s a hot rod scooter. The body shape and 400cc+ is what make the maxi’s like burgmans different to me.


  6. Eric Link Says:

    Another thought; to me smallframe literally means the classic vespa smallframe (which a lot of people don’t understand is narrower and smaller than a regular ‘large frame’ vespa, which is also different that the ‘wide frame or wide mount’ from the 50′s. So smallframe, large frame, wide mount and then small and large modern vespas (LX being small, GTS, GT being large).


  7. hodaddy Says:

    Georgia classifies them as
    motorcycles if their over 50cc’s


  8. ross Says:

    A super scooter is a scooter that has a bigger engine in it.Like the E4-01 from Honda in Japan,a full 900cc.Which Honda will not bring here maybe in the future.I call my Helix a (maxi scooter)because that is what it is.Maybe we call them super scooters because there super like a motorcycle.It’s really not about cc,it’s a state of mind.


  9. Anonymous Says:

    Maxi-scooters sound too similar to Maxi Pads.


  10. Anonymous Says:

    Well, if you read the intro to my MaxiScootersUSA Yahoo group it says USA Available Maxi-
    Scooters (200cc’s and up). That’s where I drew the line, as I usually
    see 150cc’s and below as a smaller (but definitely not lesser) class. (Besides my Reflex, I just obtained a 125cc Buddy…)
    However I do sometimes feel that the 600cc’s and up scoots are really
    more like specially designed motorcycles than scooters…

    In any case I’ve solved any confusion on my part about this by
    sometimes refering to anything powered on two wheels (moped to 2300cc
    Triumph) simply as a motorbike.

    It’ll be interesting to see what your poll shows…

    ~drummer~ “>})


  11. Anonymous Says:

    Well – I dunno. A “scooter” to me is something that is sort of really classic (like yours Seve) or something that is of similar “girth” – if you will.

    I own a 650 Burgman and keep, clean, and drive my friends 250 Helix since she stores it here at my place.


    I would have to say that the 250 and above crowd should or could be able to call their bikes “maxi-scoots” simply because they are freeway legal across most the united states interstates. Other than that – they are hardly “maxi” because they feel like flyweights when compared to my 650.



  12. Anonymous Says:

    A maxi is a ‘bath tub’ shape. A super is a scooter shape. Both have larger motors and usually wheels than smaller scoots. My scarabeo 500 is a super scooter because it has a floor and looks like a traditional scooter. The riding position is also the traditional position (feet down not forward). So my opinion there are 2 classes of scooter over 250 a maxi like the Burghman and the super like the scarabeo.


  13. Anonymous Says:

    Maxi-Scooter sounds too much like a hygiene product. Mega-Scooter doesn’t sound so girly boy! IMHO


  14. Philvino Says:

    My definition for a maxi-scooter,with an engine size extending the total frame and wheelbase beyond 55 inches and coupled with a larger motor beyond 200cc, should be consider a maxi-scooter. After all the P200e is a large displacement work horse but has never been labeled as a maxi-scooter.


  15. Dave Says:

    I consider my Vespa GTS 250 to be a scooter because of the design, body work and seating position, it has nothing to do with engine size. I consider the Burgmans, Silverwing, Majesty, Morphous etc. to be Maxi scooters, not entirely based on engine size but because of the design (more Barcalounger than kitchen chair seating) and sheer size as well. I’m not sure where that leaves the Big Ruckus. Where do the Scarabeo’s and BV’s fit in? Probably the Super category, but I’ve never heard that term used in conjunction with scooters before today.


  16. Anonymous Says:

    “My definition of a scooter is the engine being part of the swingarm.”

    In that case, the Suzuki Burgman 650 wouldn’t be a scooter since the engine is frame-mounted and the swingarm contains a series of gears to deliver power from the eCVT to the rear wheel.



  17. Anonymous Says:

    I mostly call my Reflex and other bikes in its class a “scooter”. That’s what the manufacturer calls them and I have no problem with that. But when pressed with categories such as the poll you posted the term maxi-scoot is my choice. Motorbike is also a good one.


  18. dennis munger Says:

    When you search the Internet for SCOOTER, the results include the 2-wheeled kind as well as the kind that disabled people use. I think that one of these groups should change the name from scooter to something else. For 2 radically different modes of transport to use the same name is crazy. It seems that motor scooter riders have an opportunity to come up with a name that would better describe these 2-wheeled vehicles that does not use the word SCOOTER.

    Most people in the USA think of scooters as the small Vespa/Cushman kind used to go around town or down to the beach. Vacationers also rent them when they go away on holidays.

    With the evolution of the motorscooter, as well as the development of the Maxi-scooters (above 250 cc) the name really doesn’t work any longer to describe this class of vehicles.

    What is called for is a NAME CHANGE. During my search I was amazed to see all the scooter web sites and so many active scooterists (bad word) involved all over the world. With the kind of connectivity the Internet provides I think that it may be possible to get a consensus to a new, more descriptive name especially for the larger bikes. Your poll is a start but I think that the choices should not include the word SCOOTER.
    I suggest: 1. Automatic Motorcycle (AMC) 2. Step-Through Cycle


  19. Voyager Says:

    I think of a ‘scooter’ as a PTW (powered two-wheeler) that you can ‘step through’ to get on (or off) the seat.


  20. Anonymous Says:

    Just call it a bike!


  21. Dudel Says:

    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the Department of Transportation (DOT) defines “scooter-type motorcycle” as having the area directly in front of the seat lower than the seat itself (i.e. step-through configuration) and having integrated floorboards.

    Traditionally, scooters have had the engine/tranny part of the swingarm but there are a number of models that do not and as engines get larger and customers demand better handling we will see more frame-mounted engines even on the smaller bikes.

    I consider the Vespa GTS-250 and the Honda SH-300 to be scooters not super-scooters. While some of the 250 bikes are highway capable, many are not. The GTS is 22-HP but the BigRuckus is only 18-HP and heavier; taking it on the highway is iffy. Thus, I put the cut-off at 400cc for a super-scooter because that is the reasonable engine size for the highway.


  22. Vespa Rich Says:

    Motor scooter is OK… but I vote UBER SCOOTER! YEAH!


  23. PNB Says:

    In your poll you need to give people the option to use more than one term. I use both maxiscooter and superscooter for big scoots. In handling and performance, the Burgman 650 and Yamaha Tmax500 are both more like automatic motorcycles than traditional swinging-engine, small wheel scooters. IMHO the Burgman 400 is the best handling of the swinging-engine scooters.
    Paul Blez in London, UK


  24. Anonymous Says:

    Um, I hate telling people it’s a maxiscooter. Sounds like I’m calling it a female hygiene product. If anything, megascooter works or automatic motorcycle.

    on another note, when i tell people i ride a scooter, then take a look at the Burgman, they ask me where the scooter is?


  25. Skorj Says:

    In Japan we call them ootobie – ‘autobike’ in English.


  26. Anonymous Says:

    maxi scooter should do! though is sounds like a feminine hygiene product.


    and old men


  27. Steve Says:

    Ok, Anon. I don’t know why… but I’ll respond.

    What do young “men” drive/ride?


  28. ross Says:

    This is late, sure, but why not bring it back. I’ve always taken it as a design thing, not an engine. I had a coworker who had a CFMOTO Fashion, I think the engine size was 200, but it was longer and well, just looked more like a “touring” bike. This is one where I think looks has everything to do with it.


    • Sporty Says:

      The “fashion is a 250cc, A Honda Helex clone and for a 250cc slow as hell(Under 70mph)….And ugly!!
      When I first started at IBA-USA scooters as head mechanic I wanted one, That feeling faded the longer I worked there, To many problems for me to want one.


  29. Steve Says:

    I just realized all my polls are broken. The downside of using free web apps. :(


  30. Sporty Says:

    Wisconsin calls it a motorcycle if it’s over 49cc


  31. V-Man Says:

    Gotta go with Uber Scooter, just sounds better!


  32. J. Lord Says:

    No, I don’t like the term Maxi Scooter. My mp3 is more male that that, LOL. I refer to my MP3 500 as a “bike” or “Scoot” As Hodaddy said in Georgia it’s a motorcycle if over 50cc. I get mixed reactions from true motorcyclist some turn their nose up, others give “the wave” as we pass. I do have the same license and training as they do.
    I pulled up beside an older guy with a harley one day, he looked over and said “that’s a new one on me.” I just smiled and said “It’s Italian.” It got a laugh and a wave.


  33. KZ1000st Says:

    I would have lumped all scooters into the same category until I bought a Honda Big Ruckus. To me it’s more like an automatic Honda Rebel than a scooter and I have a Rebel around to compare it to. Feet forward, big wide handlebars and a substantial exhaust note, not to mention the handling and you don’t sit upright on it. It seems to me some of these big scooters are more like automatic touring bikes than a GTS 250 Vespa.



  1. Honda helex | Killaarmy - 30. May, 2011

    [...] Poll – What to call a 250cc+ Scooter | TheScooterScoopThe “fashion is a 250cc, A Honda Helex clone and for a 250cc slow as hell(Under 70mph)….And ugly!! When I first started at IBA-USA scooters as head mechanic I wanted one, That feeling faded the longer I worked there, To many problems for me to want one. By admin in Uncategorized  You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed. [...]

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