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  1. #1 Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    foreign China moto dude bikerdoc's Avatar
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    After launching a 125cc version of its three wheeled MP3 in 2009, touted as the world’s first hybrid scooter, Piaggio is upping the ante by introducing a more powerful 300cc version that still offers incredible efficiency. The MP3 Hybrid 300ie has a 278cc engine claimed to get 141 mpg in ‘Hybrid Power’ mode while emitting half of the CO2 emissions of a comparable combustion-only powered scooter. But don’t think its riding experience is watered-down as Piaggio reports that the powertrain of the 300ie performs comparably to a conventional gas-powered 400cc scooter while distributing the output between 65% ‘Hybrid Power’ mode and 35% electric. During standing starts or whenever riding situations call for quick acceleration, the electric motor supplements the power of the combustion engine to provide a claimed 30% boost in power.

    The MP3 300ie combines lithium ion batteries located underneath the seat with plug-in convenience for recharging the power source. The scooter charges via a power cable that plugs into a standard electrical socket. It charges fully in three hours, and juices up to 85% in only two. The batteries also recharge using part of the energy of the gas-burning engine and by recovering energy created when braking. It can also run solely as zero-emissions electric vehicle for limited spurts of approximately 20km.

    The MP3 Hybrid 300ie mates a 278cc gasoline-powered engine with a synchronous brushless permanent magnet motor for propulsion. Its parallel hybrid drive system takes the power from both the electric motor and the internal combustion engine and transfers it to the automatic CVT transmission.

    The 300ie features a ride-by-wire throttle system that sends signals to the onboard electronics of the Vehicle Management System which decides how much power to draw from the electric motor and combustion engine. The techno-scooter offers four drive modes – two hybrid and two electric. Switching to hybrid or fully electric mode is as easy as pushing a button on the right handlebar. Riders can toggle between modes even when on the move. It also has a reverse gear controlled by the electric motor.

    The new MP3 Hybrid 300ie still features Piaggio’s quadrilateral front suspension layout that consists of four aluminum arms and two steering tubes. This allows the MP3 to tilt into corners and provides a ride comparable to a standard motorcycle. It also has an electronic front suspension lock system that allows riders to stop without the need to put their feet down and to park without using a kickstand.

    Right now it’s only available in Europe, but is expected to be soon available in the United States as well as it already passes stringent Euro 3 emission standards. Initially, it is offered in one color, pearl white with a two-tone saddle. The storage compartment under the seat is said to be big enough to hold a helmet with a little space left over for other gear. Two new buttons have been added to its cockpit, a horn on the left and a ‘Hy Tech’ button on the right for toggling through the four operating modes. Piaggio is also producing a variation called the MP3 Hybrid LT 300ie, with more space between the front wheels. This model could then be operated by owners with only a license to drive a car, expanding its potential customer base.

    mp3hybrid300ie_1_&#.jpg

    MSRP: $7999 Euro; $9,790 US

    Source: http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/634/73...e-Scooter.aspx

    More info: http://www.piaggiogroup.com/news/201...00ie_en_en.htm

    This is exciting stuff and I want one... now
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  2. #2 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    Senior C-Moto Guru euphonius's Avatar
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    First thing that came to mind when I saw that picture was Bombardier's Can-Am Spyder, which has a similar twin front wheel configuration. Alas, the Spyder tops out at 30+ miles per gallon, or about 8 liters per 100 km.



    http://spyder.brp.com/en-US/

    Must be a very strange sensation to ride one of these. They supposedly lean the way a motorcycle does, but there's got to be a learning curve.

    Here's a link to a North Bay Sport Riders thread by a woman to bought one to help her through rehabilitation after an extremely severe accident in Idaho.

    cheers
    jkp
    Shanghai
    2010 JH600 "Merkin Muffley" (in Shanghai)
    2000 KLR650 "Feezer Ablanalp" (in California)
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  3. #3 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    foreign China moto dude bikerdoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by euphonius View Post
    First thing that came to mind when I saw that picture was Bombardier's Can-Am Spyder, which has a similar twin front wheel configuration. Alas, the Spyder tops out at 30+ miles per gallon, or about 8 liters per 100 km.

    http://spyder.brp.com/en-US/

    Must be a very strange sensation to ride one of these. They supposedly lean the way a motorcycle does, but there's got to be a learning curve.

    Here's a link to a North Bay Sport Riders thread by a woman to bought one to help her through rehabilitation after an extremely severe accident in Idaho.

    cheers
    well its still somewhat different to the spyder, though I appreciate the subtle similarities. I've been reading and researching all kinds of rides in the past few months, with the Spyder and the Piaggio amongst many of my reads and considerations. I've ordered a new Jetmax 250cc scooter from CFMoto which I have been waiting on for two weeks waiting now, so expecting the call from the dealer any moment (or not). Still reassessing my 4th bike option and seriously so undecided on just what it will be... the JH600... a G650GS or F800GS, or a Piaggio MP3... as I'd been thinking about importing the 500... but had also read a lot about the MP3 125 Hybrid, which is now replaced by my considering the new 300cc instead. I even travelled up to Hangzhou to look at a brand new Kymco Xciting, and spoke at length more than once with a Kymco importer based in Changzhou (Jiangsu) about importing a Xciting 500 with ABS. But the price is outrageous (it's just a Kymco -and I mean that in a nice way, as I could buy a HD Sportster for the same money or for a little extra money I could buy a BMW 650). But I don't know... like I mentioned in a previous post... hell I think I need one of every kind of bike... or a special wand to make something that can do "everything"... road, trail, scooter... depending on my intended ride on the day ;) LOL
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  4. #4 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
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    What interests you most Bikerdoc, the hybrid engine or the three-wheel configuration? Obviously as you have 'bikes as well, you would probably come under the enthusiast label!

    I personally never see why anyone would want a three-wheeler, whether front or rear type, as it loses the advantages of a two-wheeler and has few of the advantages of a small car. If you just want something that doesn't fall over when you stop you might as well just put trainer wheels on a m'bike - or go the next step and have weather protection and storage from a small three-wheel car. There have been a few of them over the decades and they never seriously caught on (except as bemos and tuktuks? lol). The Messerschmidt and the Reliant Robin come to mind that I know of in the last few decades. They were purchased mainly by poor people and a few enthusiasts I believe? In the end there has to be a sustainable market to make them last, surely?

    I think Paiggio must indeed have done some expensive market research and somehow convinced themselves that tooling and production are worthwhile but on what grounds I wonder? They will not break into the four-wheeled small car market, and I also think they certainly will not find any more than a small niche in the motorcycle riders market.

    I am very interested in the economy and in the green savings of such an engine combination however and would consider buying one on those grounds alone in a two-wheeler even if they lost some maneuverability, now that they have a decent performance and range. That would be a viable machine that could quickly spread from enthusiasts and eco-minded folk to the larger market. The scooter style may help there in cities especially. I would also like to see some computations on real green savings, if any, in the production of such machines. Don't want to save the planet on the one hand while destroying it with production costs and heavy metal pollution from manufacturing batteries and circuit boards on the other ...

    If they can do it with the same sort of centre of gravity and ride-ability as a 'bike then I would prefer that myself and choose the hybrid just for economy and eco-values. I think they would have to have a chinabike pricing though to kick off and also retain a manual gears option.

    The ability to drive on a car license in some places would be an advantage for the three wheeler model but if it drives anything like the car type three-wheelers I have tried it wouldn't be fun (or safe). The leaning type of steering might aid that 'driveabilty' but I truly wonder what the value of such a design is!
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  5. #5 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    foreign China moto dude bikerdoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jape View Post
    What interests you most Bikerdoc, the hybrid engine or the three-wheel configuration? Obviously as you have 'bikes as well, you would probably come under the enthusiast label!

    I personally never see why anyone would want a three-wheeler, whether front or rear type, as it loses the advantages of a two-wheeler and has few of the advantages of a small car. If you just want something that doesn't fall over when you stop you might as well just put trainer wheels on a m'bike - or go the next step and have weather protection and storage from a small three-wheel car. There have been a few of them over the decades and they never seriously caught on (except as bemos and tuktuks? lol). The Messerschmidt and the Reliant Robin come to mind that I know of in the last few decades. They were purchased mainly by poor people and a few enthusiasts I believe? In the end there has to be a sustainable market to make them last, surely?

    I think Paiggio must indeed have done some expensive market research and somehow convinced themselves that tooling and production are worthwhile but on what grounds I wonder? They will not break into the four-wheeled small car market, and I also think they certainly will not find any more than a small niche in the motorcycle riders market.

    I am very interested in the economy and in the green savings of such an engine combination however and would consider buying one on those grounds alone in a two-wheeler even if they lost some maneuverability, now that they have a decent performance and range. That would be a viable machine that could quickly spread from enthusiasts and eco-minded folk to the larger market. The scooter style may help there in cities especially. I would also like to see some computations on real green savings, if any, in the production of such machines. Don't want to save the planet on the one hand while destroying it with production costs and heavy metal pollution from manufacturing batteries and circuit boards on the other ...

    If they can do it with the same sort of centre of gravity and ride-ability as a 'bike then I would prefer that myself and choose the hybrid just for economy and eco-values. I think they would have to have a chinabike pricing though to kick off and also retain a manual gears option.

    The ability to drive on a car license in some places would be an advantage for the three wheeler model but if it drives anything like the car type three-wheelers I have tried it wouldn't be fun (or safe). The leaning type of steering might aid that 'driveabilty' but I truly wonder what the value of such a design is!
    For me the interest lay more in the Hyrbid engine to be frank. Though that being said I think to be fair while I don't have a bias one way or the other about the scoot having three wheels, I won't discount it purely based on the fact that it does. The spyder for me is not a consideration as it does have three wheels, but more importantly it's how those wheels are configured. The Spyder has a wide wheel base and for me that's the clinicher right there. With such a wide wheel base there's little benefit that offers over and above what a motorcycle offers - may as well have my Suzuki swift thanks. Whereas by comparison the Piaggio MP3 has a much narrower width and in my opinion thus retains many of the positive characteristics of a motorcycle/scooter. Another advantage is that it has three rubber contact points on the riding surface as opposed to two, and that in itself is not a bad thing at all. Especially in PRC where few people give a rats arse about the next person/road user. At the end of the day it's all very subjective, which is why there are so many makes and models of everything that us as consumers buy/use/need/want... I really don't give a rats about the merits or otherwise, the marketability, the unique characteristics, the colour, or any other aspect... I like the friggin bike/trike and as far as I am concerned that's all that matters... to me!
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  6. #6 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    grumpy old sod jape's Avatar
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    Thanbks for the explanation. I wasn't asking you to justify what you want or why of course but these three-wheelers just don't make any sense to me. I wonder if the engine design of the larger capacity requires the width?
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  7. #7 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    foreign China moto dude bikerdoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jape View Post
    Thanbks for the explanation. I wasn't asking you to justify what you want or why of course but these three-wheelers just don't make any sense to me. I wonder if the engine design of the larger capacity requires the width?
    Haha. no worries... 'jape' I do get your points... however if you look carefully at the Spyder vs vs Piaggio MP3 while they both have three wheels, that's about the only characteristics they have in common. The Spyder looks nice, but a little poser-ish IMO, and the front wheel width is just too wide for my liking, which places major limitations and hinders the great benefits that bikes offer in terms of manoeuvrability. If I could be tempted by the Spyder (which I'm not in the slightest) then I'd probably be more likely to consider a sidecar (outfit) due to it's utilitarian advantages. But again I'm not into sidecars for the same reasons and limitations they present -which brings me back to either a fair-dinkum motorcycle/scooter or a car/4x4. The MP3 however slots in between there somewhere, and while the front end detracts from the package just a little aesthetically, I place it in a totally different category to the Spyder (but what category -gawd knows). The MP3 doesn't suffer to the same degree on the frontal width as the Spyder does. This means it's likely that one can do almost as much on the MP3 as on a regular scoot. However the really exciting thing is the Hybrid engineering and how its been factored into the overall design... big marks to Piaggio in my books on how they've bought the technologies together, and more importantly made it in an affordable package. I'm also curious to compare the standard engined MP3 with these new Hybrid designs and whether or not there are any ramifications on overall width/form etc amongst other design and engineering considerations.

    I'm just ecstatic that hybrid technologies are being employed by more mainstream manufacturers/designers etc which helps us move from this fossil fuel dependency. Because we sure are running out of the stuff... Notwithstanding that we may just as likely be moving carbon footprints from one source to another, but the more we tinker with these alternatives the closer we get to the next big breakthrough in sustainability and moreover (and more importantly) better consideration to the planet and biosphere, and everything else that depends on it.
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  8. #8 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    Senior C-Moto Guru euphonius's Avatar
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    Dear BikerDoc,

    have you found any explanation for why Piaggio made this first hybrid a three wheeler? I'm guessing it's because of the weight or perhaps bulk of what essentially is a dual-engine configuration. Most hybrid cars on the road today have an internal combustion engine and an electric engine, both of which are capable of pushing the car down the road. The next generation will be the Chevy Volt, which I believe relies solely on its electric motor for propulsion, but has a small gas engine to generate electricity, and, hence, needs some very hefty batteries to store all that charge, as well as a fuel tank.

    Surely this Piaggio takes the Prius rather than the Volt approach, as it's simply not feasible to cram two engines AND batteries into this roomier three-wheel frame, much less a standard two-wheeler frame. Do they provide details of the two power plants, battery bulk and fuel tank capacity?

    Or am I getting this all wrong?

    I've been watching reports about purely electric motorbikes, which are starting to reach a point of viability in terms of range (some are pushing 200km). For me the holy grail would be a purely battery powered dual sport with range rivaling an internal combustion bike. But if, while we wait, someone cobbles together a hybrid that substantially boosts fuel efficiency while preserving substantial range, this would be quite a breakthrough.

    cheers
    jkp
    Shanghai
    2010 JH600 "Merkin Muffley" (in Shanghai)
    2000 KLR650 "Feezer Ablanalp" (in California)
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  9. #9 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    foreign China moto dude bikerdoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by euphonius View Post
    Dear BikerDoc,

    have you found any explanation for why Piaggio made this first hybrid a three wheeler? I'm guessing it's because of the weight or perhaps bulk of what essentially is a dual-engine configuration. Most hybrid cars on the road today have an internal combustion engine and an electric engine, both of which are capable of pushing the car down the road. The next generation will be the Chevy Volt, which I believe relies solely on its electric motor for propulsion, but has a small gas engine to generate electricity, and, hence, needs some very hefty batteries to store all that charge, as well as a fuel tank.

    Surely this Piaggio takes the Prius rather than the Volt approach, as it's simply not feasible to cram two engines AND batteries into this roomier three-wheel frame, much less a standard two-wheeler frame. Do they provide details of the two power plants, battery bulk and fuel tank capacity?

    Or am I getting this all wrong?

    I've been watching reports about purely electric motorbikes, which are starting to reach a point of viability in terms of range (some are pushing 200km). For me the holy grail would be a purely battery powered dual sport with range rivaling an internal combustion bike. But if, while we wait, someone cobbles together a hybrid that substantially boosts fuel efficiency while preserving substantial range, this would be quite a breakthrough.

    cheers
    rather than cut & paste, take a look at the specs of the hybrid 125 and 300 Piaggio MP3 models which will answer most of your questions. I also have been following really closely developments in alternative propulsion systems for vehicles, basically cars and motorcycles/scooters... though the effective real ranges for EV are somewhat much less ambitious than the 200km you mention. Realistically the ranges are limited to somewhere in the vicinity of 100km max for motorcycles for 100% electric motorbikes at the moment. Even the Zero is less than that range, and they are one of the few handful of commercially available motorcycles on the market at a realistic price. This Piaggio hybrid does combine the best of the two technologies and it's integrated. There are some EV motobikes that are pushing the envelope but they tend to be at the high-end and are more orientated towards competitive directions like the EV motoTT http://www.iomtt.com/

    I'd love to combine certain design and functional elements from a dual purpose motorbike with those of a scooter plus the technologies of the Hybrid as is found in these MP3's... but for now that's purely wishful thinking.

    125 MP3 hybrid http://www.piaggiogroup.com/news/200..._hybrid_en.htm and
    300 MP3 hybrid http://www.piaggiogroup.com/news/201...00ie_en_en.htm

    I'm looking forward to the reviews of the 300 in the near future and will seriously consider buying/importing one into PRC if it's as good as it reads on paper
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  10. #10 Re: Piaggio MP3 Hybrid 300ie 
    Senior C-Moto Guru euphonius's Avatar
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    Yes, this is getting interesting. The Piaggio designs seem very well considered. The fuel efficiency is amazing. Both models are rated at 60km/liter, or 1.6liter/100km. That's 141 mpg!

    worth keeping an eye on, though I would not cancel your Kymco order!
    jkp
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    2000 KLR650 "Feezer Ablanalp" (in California)
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