July 18, 2008
U.S. Scooter Sales Take Off on $4 Gas
A spike in gasoline prices in the United States has prompted a run on scooters that boast mileage as high as 60 to 100 miles per gallon, industry analysts said.
When gas got up around $4, the scooters started disappearing. The Honda warehouses nationwide are empty, Honda salesman Dave Mungenast told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Sales seem to be directly related to rising gas prices, the newspaper reported. Scooter sales were up 24 percent in the first quarter of 2008, when gas was closer to $3 per gallon than $4.
Sales have escalated since, dealers say. Vernon Carver, owner of Moto Italia in Edwardsville, Mo., told the Post-Dispatch sales at his shop this year have already surpassed total sales for 2007.
Vespa St. Louis owner Steve Zompa said his business sold 200 scooters a year since 2004. But, we've been selling them at a pace of about one a day since April, he said.