A scooter or motor scooter is a type of motorcycle with a step-through frame and a platform for the rider’s feet or integrated footrests.
Elements of scooter design were present in some of the earliest motorcycles, and scooters have been made since at least 1914. The classic scooter design features a step-through frame and a flat floorboard for the rider’s feet. This design is possible because most scooter engines and drive systems are attached to the rear axle or under the seat. Unlike a conventional motorcycle, in which the engine is mounted on the frame, most modern scooters allow the engine to swing with the rear wheel, while most vintage scooters and some newer retro models have an axle-mounted engine.
Modern scooters starting from late-1980s generally use a continuously variable transmission (CVT), while older ones use a manual transmission with the gearshift and clutch control built into the left handlebar. Scooters usually feature bodywork, including a front leg shield and body that conceals all or most of the mechanicals. There is often some integral storage space, either under the seat, built into the front leg shield, or both. Scooters have varying engine displacements and configurations ranging from 50 cc single-cylinder to 850 cc twin-cylinder models.
Traditionally, scooter wheels are smaller than conventional motorcycle wheels and are made of pressed steel or cast aluminum alloy, bolt on easily, and often are interchangeable between front and rear. Some scooters carry a spare wheel. Many recent scooters use conventional front forks with the front axle fastened at both ends.
- Best for commuting in the city (not meant for highway use)
- Lower seat height
- Upright neutral riding position with mid-range handlebars
- Usually does not contain any front fairing
- Engine sizes can range from 50cc to 850cc
- Great choice for new riders and all-skill levels