While Schwinn has been an American household name for decades, modern Schwinn products are actually owned by Dorel (known for its juvenile products). Dorel owns both Schwinn bicycles and Schwinn Motorsports. Schwinn motor scooters began manufacturing its 50-cc, gas-powered scooters in 2005 and launched additional 149-cc models in 2006. Schwinn motor scooters are manufactured in the United States. All Schwinn scooters have four-stroke engines and meet specified DOT and EPA regulations for motor vehicles. Schwinn first launched the Hope in 2008. Buyers can only expect to own a pink and white (mostly pink) Hope scooter. The name and color scheme indicate one unusual feature that comes with the Hope scooter. A portion of every new Hope scooter sale supports breast cancer awareness and research, hence the name and color.
The 2011 Schwinn Hope is a scooter-style motorcycle and is available as the Hope 50 (49-cc engine) and the Hope 150 (150-cc engine). Both scooters carry over from 2010. Standard feature highlights include lightweight alloy wheels and a color-matched cargo box. Both submodels feature an air-cooled, four-stroke, single-cylinder engine. While not exactly energetic, the engine provides acceptable power, but is somewhat hindered by the belt driven, continuously variable transmission (CVT). The CVT makes shifting non-existent but is slow to bring power to the rear wheel. The Hope comes equipped with an electric starter and also keeps a kick-starter as a back up. The 2011 Schwinn Hope 50 only comes with a one-piece saddle that provides seating for one. The 2011 Schwinn Hope 150 includes a one-piece saddle with seating space for two. Both come with 10-inch tires. These tires are acceptable for the 50-cc scooter but seem out of place on a 150-cc machine. Consequently, the Hope 150 suffers in ride, handling, and stability when compared to competitor bikes fitted with more appropriate tire sizes. A chrome/metallic-finished rear cargo rack with a 40-pound weight capacity comes standard on both submodels. An optional black-finish cargo rack borrowed from the Schwinn Valo is available. The Valo rack also has a 40-pound weight capacity.
The 2011 Schwinn Hope 50 looks a bit stubby compared to the Hope 150. The Hope 150 has much better proportions with a longer seat that fits the shape of a hip, urban scooter. Don’t expect to overtake many vehicles as both Schwinns tend to produce modest power output. Fit, finish, and overall ride quality is what would be expected from a Chinese manufacturer but not from an American. Japanese, European, and South Korean manufactured scooters shame both Schwinn Hope submodels in overall quality, ride, and feel. However, these competitors also cost much more. Unfortunately, many comparably priced Chinese scooters are available and worth a look for budget minded buyers.