Having already tested the Vespa LX 150 on trips in Europe (including Italy to London and London to Helsinki), Agnieszka Flak and Alberto Rinaldi decided to embrace the spirit of a true African adventure. The pair completed a trip from South Africa through Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and back to South Africa (about 9000 kms). And if all goes to plan, this is just the beginning. The 2 explorers hope to complete an African West coastal trip from Johannesburg through Morocco to Spain and Italy, in the future.
This is a first for Vespa. The pair chose an LX 150 over any other scooters that were on offer. Many people have accomplished similar trips on a Vespa PX, but few are prepared to rely on a belt-driven scooter. They fear that problems that could be encountered along the way. The LX 150 is not the first choice to carry 2 riders (including their luggage).
There were no mechanical breakdowns along the way. This is testimony to the scooter’s performance reliability and a result of having the scooter full serviced before departure. The pair did experience several flat tyres along the way (which slowed their progress).
The adventure duo averaged around 80km/h and achieved between 400 km and 600 km a day (depending on the quality of the fuel and the condition of the roads). This included some hair raising off-road and night-time expeditions. The fuel efficiency of the Vespa ensured between 70 km and 140 km per tank. They only required a 10 litre and 5 litre jerry can for additional fuel.
So why two wheels rather than four? Well, according to Alberto Rinaldi, “On a scooter, people don’t see you as a threat.” This also allowed the explorers to get closer to the people and really feel that they were a part of the African experience. The reaction from the people they passed in the villages was priceless. People working in the fields dropped their ploughs and stared at them in amazement.
Many people could not believe that they were on a trip across Southern Africa on such a small scooter, with such tiny wheels. Some locals even offered to buy the Italian Stallion. One guy at the Zambian border offered them his car in exchange for their Vespa. When they declined he offered them 20 cows. To find the perfect Vespa to enchance your lifestyle, check out the Junk Mail website for Vespa Scooters for sale.
Anything can happen on a scooter. The pair didn’t know if they were going to make it and that made it even more exciting for them. Getting through each day and reaching their next destination felt like a real accomplishment.
You can follow the entire adventure on http://sharp-sharp-vespa.blogspot.com/
Also feel free to check out the following posts on the Junk Mail Blog: