The ‘Lambretta-like’ retro scooter saga has been a little quiet of late but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing happening in the background; particularly in Spain and Gibraltar.
Last week we got a press release from Scomadi with more details of their court action to prevent Royal Alloy (previously Royalloy) scooters coming into the EU. Meanwhile MotoGB – the importing and distribution company who were planning to import Royal Alloy – have just been announced as the UK distributors for the new Lambretta scooter.
Scomadi: is the retro scooter brand established originally by Frank Sanderson (Scooter Innovation) Paul Melici (PM Tuning) and Robert Oolsthorn who were previously getting their scooters built by Hanway in China, but have now set up a new factory in Thailand following some disagreements with their Chinese partners. They have a raft of proposed Euro-4 models in the pipeline including a water-cooled 125 and a Morini-powered Scomadi 400.
Royal Alloy: is the scooter brand that Hanway attempted to establish and MotoGB planned to import to produce retro scooters based on the same platform as Scomadi but with some subtle styling differences. At the moment import of these to the EU has been stopped by the Scomadi court action.
MotoGB: are the UK importers for several motorcycle and scooter brands, including SYM (who make the new Lambretta), and previously active in the classic scooter arena as importers of LML. Due to the precarious situation with LML production they have been looking elsewhere for another classically-styled scooter brand to sell. They import some Hanway-produced bikes and planned to launch Royalloy in April 2017, however the Scomadi court action has so far prevented that. More recently MotoGB representatives were present at EuroLambretta in Adria for the presentation of the V-Special and have now been announced as UK importers for the new Lambretta scooters.
Lambretta: the revived classic scooter brand headed by Dutchman Walter Scheffrahn who will be releasing their Kiska-styled, SYM produced V-Special scooter at the end of 2017. They are also planning to build larger capacity Lambretta models, proposing a 400cc scooter in the future.
Lambretta delivery date/prices: A spokesman for UK importer, MotoGB told us they are “Delighted” to add the Lambretta to their existing brands. They expect deliveries of the 50/125 and 200 Lambretta during the first week of December. All models will be air-cooled and priced competitively at £2499, £2999 and £3499 respectively.
What’s going on in Spain?
Apparently a small batch of Hanway-produced plastic-bodied scooters did manage to slip into Europe before Scomadi took out the court injunction preventing the sale of Royal Alloy machines.
The Scomadi press release reads:
‘It was brought to our attention a couple of months ago, that a small number of scooters had already been delivered to Spain. Scomadi insisted that these scooters could only be sold as Scomadi scooters. Therefore, you may see some of these scooters being advertised for sale in Spain. These sales are a one off only.’
This has created the odd situation where machines have arrived in Europe as one thing and been rebadged as another. The scooters themselves – which dealers like Motorama in Gibraltar are calling ‘new Scomadis’ – are a kind of halfway house model, with the old Scomadi GP-style headsets but also the Special-style sidepanels and paintjobs that were previously shown on proposed Royal Alloy (Royalloy/RA) models.
Currently Scomadi’s Thailand plant is producing Euro-3 specification models while the Euro-4 version is being tested, so dealers in the UK and the rest of Europe are still having to wait for a scooter to stock and sell.
In the mean time with MotoGB taking on the Lambretta brand, and Walter Scheffrahn being very clear that they plan to take a robust position on what they perceive as copies, we find it hard to believe that MotoGB would be able to sell Royal Alloy alongside Lambretta, even if they won the court case with Scomadi.
The end result of all of this intrigue and legal action is that pent-up demand must be satisfied somewhere and those looking for affordable retro-styled automatic scooters are turning to machines like the AJS Modena (Lexmoto Milano), which have been selling in record numbers in the UK, or to Peugeot’s funky but original Django model.
How all this is going to pan out is anyone’s guess, but in the mean time if you want a Scomadi 125 with a unique paint-scheme then Gibraltar is the place…