Based in Chicago, Illinois, the Genuine Scooter Company is a distributor and producer of motor scooters. The firm was established in 2003, when it began distributing the Stella, a model based on classic mid-century designs. The model was manufactured in India by Lohia Machines Private Ltd. first as the Star, and then later was imported to western markets under the Stella imprint.
From 1984 to 1999, LML was involved in an agreement with Piaggio, under which LML would manufacture its Vespa scooters. After that agreement was terminated, LML continued to manufacture the Star model, a classically styled, steel-bodied scooter with a 150cc engine and a twist-shift, four-speed manual transmission. The design itself actually varies little from the original Vespa, sometimes even fooling seasoned scooter aficionados into believing they are looking at one of the original models. The design is so similar, in fact, to the old Vespa models, that many of the parts are interchangeable. That, coupled with a variety of aftermarket offerings, gives owners a wide selection of choices should they want to customize their scooters.
The Genuine Scooter Co.’s Stella 150 Four-Stroke combines that nostalgic mid-century aesthetic with an updated four-stroke engine design. Four-stroke motors are quieter and run cleaner than the old two-stroke models, making it possible for the model to pass emissions testing. This also means that the scooter can easily be driven around the neighborhood at night without angering any of your neighbors. And, while you can use the traditional kick starter, if you’re longing for the days of yore, an electric starter is also provided on this scooter.
Speaking of the 147.55cc engine on the 2010 Genuine Scooter Co.'s Stella, it is extremely fuel efficient, achieving 100 mpg city or more, depending on riding conditions. Highway mileage is a moot point here, as it is illegal to drive the scooter on the highway in many locations, and even if you could, you probably shouldn’t. No, this is more of a get-around-town type of vehicle, most at home in the below-40mph range.
The handling is as nimble as one would expect from a vintage scooter, thanks to the Stella 150’s ridiculously tight turning radius, small wheels, short wheelbase, and light weight. In a nutshell, the scooter simply goes where you point it. Weaving in and out of traffic is a snap, and of course, parking presents no worries at all, even on the biggest shopping days of the year.
Speaking of shopping, though, the Genuine Scooter Co. Stella 150 is not much on hauling cargo. True, it does feature a bag clip under the seat, to which grocery bags can be fastened, but if you are picking up more than a few things, you might want to bring a backpack, too, just in case.