Anne Robinson, Karen Saxby
Perfect in its compactness, in its functionality, and in its widely imitated design, the Vespa scooter is not only a means of transport, but a true icon. In celebration of Vespa's 75th anniversary, Vespa: Style and Passion is the lavishly illustrated official history of the legendary scooters and the culture they've inspired. Introduced by the Italian firm Piaggio in 1946 with the model 98, Vespa enjoyed quick success. The scooters' diminutive size and affordability were perfect for promoting postwar mobility. But as with most novel designs, it would also be highly imitated, destined for icon status. From Piaggio's origins to the first Vespa prototypes to today's forward-looking Elettrica model, Vespa: Style and Passion is the ultimate retrospective of this beloved brand. A rich selection of visuals includes dozens of studio images of the most significant models from throughout Vespa history--including classics like the 125, 150 GS, Super Sprint, Primavera, and Rally--as well as period advertisements, rare archival photographs, and images of Vespas in popular culture and motorsport. Mod culture, perhaps most responsible for spreading scooter culture, is also given its due with images of customized Vespas. Vespa: Style and Passion relates with elan and high design the endless evolution of a marque that has conquered six continents, with 19 million units sold. The Vespa is not simply a scooter, but the scooter, known and appreciated the world over--a rare example of a motor vehicle that survived crises and fashions, always remaining faithful to the original concept. This is the definitive story of that influence.