By John Burns
Has anyone seen a new Kymco lately? The giant Taiwanese manufacturer claimed to be the world’s largest scooter manufacturer once upon a time. Maybe it still is. But it’s crickets from our U.S. importer. Rumors have swirled, involving corporate intrigue, strained international relations – and was the naming of the 2010 sportbike “Quannon 150″ just a coincidence, or that the 2010 introduction took place at the elite Biltmore Estate? We think not. Ten years on, we need answers. And soon!
Going after the old guard
Though Kymco scooters have only been on U.S. shores for the last 10 years, the Kwang Yang Motor Company has been in business since 1963. Kymco had a decades-long partnership with Honda and currently builds the engine for BMW‘s G450X enduro bike. Unlike many overseas manufacturers, Kymco makes no bones about the fact that it intends to directly compete with the big boys.
The Biltmore Estate and the surrounding highways of Asheville, NC made for a beautiful backdrop to Kymco’s 2010 model introduction.
Kymco USA Marketing Director Rick Pawelka told Motorcycle.com that he feels Kymco scooters are every bit as good as anything made by Vespa or anybody else.
“My ultimate goal is to have people in the U.S. buy a Kymco scooter because they want a Kymco, …read more