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Conflicted! Which Scooter to Buy?

 
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Supersoul
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Joined: 29 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:21 pm    Post subject: Conflicted! Which Scooter to Buy? Reply with quote

I went to my local Genuine dealer to check out the Buddys/Rattlers and I saw what looks to be a seriously good deal on a TGB Laser R( 151cc. He was offering a left over new 2007 for $2199 total price, out the door, taxes, registration/plates, setup/shipping included.

I realize that this is a Buudy forum, but I was hoping for some input on my decision.

This looks like a spectacular deal on a Taiwan scooter. I like the Buddy better, but saving almost $1000 dollars is hard to pass up on.

Does TGB make decent scooters?
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illnoise
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Blur 150, various vintage Vespas

PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TGBs are great bikes, pretty much the same build quality and reliability as PGO (who makes the Buddy). Both are Taiwanese.

The difference is that Genuine totally nailed the marketing and rebranded all of PGOs bikes to appeal to the American market, and TGB kinda dropped the ball and has pretty weak branding/styling. Posing as a dealer, (ha) I spent a full hour at the TGB booth at Dealer Expo trying to convince them to take their branding into account. It actually came down to me telling their national sales manager that "Laser is just one letter away from loser." Cobra Powersports, the importer, are good people, have good relationships with dealers, good parts and support, they've got everything right but the branding, (now they're starting to risk their good name by selling Chinese scooters, but that's another story).

Seriously, the Buddy's a *little* cooler looking, sure, but most of it comes down to Genuine's great design, advertising and branding, which helped to attract a following (look at this list) whereas TGBs just look like generic beachfront rental scooters. If the Buddy was imported by an ATV distribution company in Arkansas, and they sold it as the PGO Bubu and ran generic ads in ScooterWorld, it wouldn't have sold nearly as well. Genuine just nailed the "urban cool pseudo-vintage" thing way better than TGB.

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jfrost2
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First Ever Sold Orange 08' Buddy 125

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is a great deal, but it's like buying a scooter with no soul, it will run and work, but the fun factor....the buddy takes it easily and wins. Both are great quality bikes, only thing I dont like about TGB bikes are that all 3 bikes they sell look exactly the same as the other.
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Supersoul
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a given that the buddy looks better and has soul (and who knows more about soul than Supersoul)?

But......$1000 is a lot of money to me (1/3 less than the Buddy), and I suspect that the TGB Laser R9 with it's 151CC motor will not be giving anything away in performance to the Buddy.

Objectively and logically, is the "cool factor" worth $1000? Even if I get buyer's remorse, I wouldn't take as big a hit if I decide to sell it.
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jmazza
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'07 Buddy Italia - The ORIGINAL!!

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a similar decision to make between the Buddy and the $1000 more Aprilia Mojito.

Now, I absolutely love my Buddy but it's a fairly objective thing to say the Mojito has more soul.

I went with the Buddy for two reasons: it's a great scoot that I love to ride (in other words it wasn't between the Mojito and say, a hardened lump of cat vomit), and it was $1k less. This is my first scoot and though I was pretty sure I'd love riding (and I do), I thought it was somewhat responsibile to go for the lesser priced scoot, since I loved them both.

Any machine can have soul if you give it one. Pull the ugly racing decals off the TGB and add some of your own. Give it a name. Stick a hula doll to the front. But if you think you like them both equally (test drive?), choosing the lesser priced scoot is no crime.
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FLMINI1048
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That seems like a pretty good deal to me. I also came across a dealer selling 2007 Mojito's for $2500 and that just seems like too good of a deal for me to pass up...now I just need to sell my bike in order to get it!
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lobsterman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That sounds like a good deal to me. I really liked the TGB Laser 150 when I went scooter shopping in 2006, but chose the Buddy for various price/performance/reputation reasons. At the time it was maybe even $100 more than the Buddy, making the decision easier (Buddy price has gone up a little since 2006).

For $1000 less than a Buddy, same dealer and both with a two year warranty, I would probably have gone with the TGB.

Wise decision or not? Who can say for sure, except that it's supposed to be a pretty good quality bike with similar performance to the Buddy, at least for top speed etc.

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jmazza
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'07 Buddy Italia - The ORIGINAL!!

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 5:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FLMINI1048 wrote:
That seems like a pretty good deal to me. I also came across a dealer selling 2007 Mojito's for $2500 and that just seems like too good of a deal for me to pass up...now I just need to sell my bike in order to get it!


Yeah my dealer wasn't discounting one penny- this was in late December of 07. $3499 + fees. They did offer $200 of accessories but still.

I still like that scoot. I'll probably end up with one sooner or later!!
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jfrost2
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First Ever Sold Orange 08' Buddy 125

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The engine of the TGB's may be 150cc but their top speed according to dealer websites show 55+ miles per hour as top speed. The buddy has 125cc but gets 60+mph and is confirmed by just about everyone on this forum who owns a buddy.

I may be wrong, but those are just stats I am seeing off of metro scooters website and other dealer websites.

Quote:
2007 TGB DELIVERY - COMMUTER - SCOOTER $2995 SAVE $300

IT'S GOT A HUGE CARGO BOX

CRUISES AT 55+ MPH AND GET 75+ MPGS


And the buddy

Quote:
Seating for two, 65 mph, and 100 mpgs. Sweet!
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lou76
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
2007 TGB DELIVERY - COMMUTER - SCOOTER $2995 SAVE $300

IT'S GOT A HUGE CARGO BOX

CRUISES AT 55+ MPH AND GET 75+ MPGS

that is the delivery model with that gigantic 4'x4' box on the back... i wouldn't be suprised if the buddy is a little faster out of the box, but i was torn between the laser and the buddy in '06 when i bought my buddy... styling-wise, i perfered the laser, but it seemed that parts and service were going to be easier to come by... which is pretty much how it turned out....
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jfrost2
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First Ever Sold Orange 08' Buddy 125

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The box is large, but cant weight any more than 40-50 pounds. If the bikes use the same 150cc engines, with a passenger weighing 150+ pounds on back, the bike may go even slower.
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Supersoul
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From Cobra Powersports (the distributors of TGB):

Kennesaw, GA, January 11, 2006 -- Cobra Powersports, the US Distributor for TGB scooters, motorcycles and ATVs (all-terrain vehicles), has announced that it has lengthened all 2006 49cc and 151cc scooters to an industry leading 2-year warranty, unlimited miles. ..........With proven reliability and performance, the TGB Laser R9 (151cc) offers over 75 MPG and a top speed of over 60 MPH.

Good MPH, good MPG, good warranty, $1000 less than Buddy......

hmmmm....I'm beginning to like the styling more and more (wink, wink)
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Keys
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I test rode a TGB and bought a Buddy. The TGB was probably equal build quality and I didn't mind the styling. The engine was powerful and smooth. The handling was good. I seriously considered buying one. For a minute...

What changed my mind was the riding position. I found it to be uncomfortable and not really good for the spirited type of riding I do. The seat is a good 1 1/2 to 2 inches higher than on the Buddy and the floorboards are quite high. This put my knees at an uncomfortable bend and made it difficult to reach the ground. It felt to me like the center of gravity was too high.

That was the deal breaker for me. I put almost 15,000 miles on my Buddy in the 15 months I owned it and it was always comfortable. I don't feel I could have comfortably put that many miles on a TGB.

My 2 cents...

--Keys Cool

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Drumwoulf
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a review of the Laser in Scoot mag #38 (Winter 2006). The rider loved the acceleration and it's top speed, but knocked the high and awkward seating position. Also there's very little storage under the seat, and no way to mount a top box on the rear...
But the deal breaker for me was when this reviewer (who admittedly rode it WFO most of the time) said that he was getting an actual 42 MPG's rather than the advertised 80 MPG's!! Razz

Sheeeesh; with a 1.3 gal tank, and getting 42MPG's (if you ride fast), you'd be in a gas station sniffing fumes about every 50 miles!!!! Rolling Eyes

On the plus side tho, the reviewer did say that the 13" wheels allowed you to lean the bike waaaay over without scraping anything, and he thought that this was FUN, FUN, FUN! And he further described this bike as a sport racer type, and not one you'd go grocery shopping with.

I'll stick with the Buddy.... Cool

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jfrost2
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First Ever Sold Orange 08' Buddy 125

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2008 2:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Plus this website is called "Modern Buddy" I'm sure everyone is going to say what "model" they'd recommend you to buy Wink
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Supersoul
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's what I have learned from you all.

A bargain scoot is not really a bargain unless it moves you. It's important to be psyched about the ride you call your own.

I've waited a long time (since my youth) to get another scooter and in my heart I know I would be disappointed if I settled for something that did not match my dream.

Thanks to you all for helping me get refocused. I think I'll wait until I can take the Buddy 150 for a test drive.

Supersoul
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jfrost2
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First Ever Sold Orange 08' Buddy 125

PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2008 5:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to think of the buddy as the scion XB if it were a car, many scooter companies now make sporty crotch rocket looking bikes which cant preform, but the buddy, it's that one bike that is unique, has a small engine, but surpasses all other 125cc in the American market.

Also, I wonder, the blur has a 150cc, I wonder if they will be using the same engine for the buddy internationals?
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KABarash
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2008 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well folks, I hate to say this but, as much as I like the Buddy for my next scoot. I can't pass up picking up a '06, 125cc Vino, gently used, about 1100 miles. The deal is $1900 the owner/seller works at the local Yamaha shop, about 20 miles from home. The closest Genuinue shop is about 90 miles. I'll be bringing the Vino, "Vinny" home the end of the month.
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ysofisonly50?
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on your new ownership of a Vino. It's a very nice scoot.
It ain't no Buddy tho. (pardon the pun)
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Supersoul
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 3:57 pm    Post subject: Not Conflicted Anymore! Reply with quote

After careful consideration I decided to go for the $2199 TGB 303R-150 out-the-door deal. It was just too good to pass up. I liked the Buddy, but I wanted more scoot for the $. With a 2 year/roadside assistance warranty plus DIY oil change/basic maintenance that won't void the warranty, I get a full-sized, race-styled scooter that seriously outperforms the Buddy 125. I've already observed 70 MPG/70+ MPH (GPS verified) with only 500 miles on the odometer. This is the kind of performance that I felt I needed for the crazy highway driving that I face in S. Florida.

Please do not misunderstand me, I do appreciate the coolness of the Buddy, I just wasn't willing to pay for it. The under appreciated, less well known Taiwanese TGB marque gave me the opportunity to obtain much more scooter for the money. I spoke to the national sales manager for TGB and he assured me that owner maintenance was OK and that TGB would support the product for 2 years regardless of who performed the service. Having owned and maintained many scoots and motorcycles over my lifetime, I am not about to pay my local dealer $125 for the initial servicing on my scoot, as I have read that some of you do. It's just too easy to DIY.

In the detailing of my thought process on this, I do not intend to demean your own personal choice. I am simply attempting to explain my own. There is no doubt that Genuine produces great motor scooters, but after much research, I discovered that TGB offers comparable quality with significantly more bang for the buck.

P.S.

If you want to kick me out of the Buddy forum, I will understand Smile

Supersoul
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Not Conflicted Anymore! Reply with quote

Supersoul wrote:
If you want to kick me out of the Buddy forum, I will understand.

Hey Supersoul,

Congratulations on your purchase. It sounds like they made you an offer you could not refuse! You're not going to get thrown out of the group for buying a TGB. In fact, I'd like to hear progress reports on how you like your TGB, how it holds up, parts and service support, etc. The only thing is, we won't be able to help you as much with scooter-specific information for the TGB.

Whatever you ride, do that helmet and gear thing and ride safe! Wink
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Dooglas
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Not Conflicted Anymore! Reply with quote

Supersoul wrote:


If you want to kick me out of the Buddy forum, I will understand Smile


Heck, we even let Vespa riders post on this forum! Enjoy your new scoot.
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KRUSTYburger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 5:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Not Conflicted Anymore! Reply with quote

Dooglas wrote:
Heck, we even let Vespa riders post on this forum!

hahaha... Hey, congrats on the new scoot. I'm glad you got something that fits your needs. I don't know what color you got, but I think the TGB would look good with a metallic green paint job like this...

http://www.revsperformance.com/images/pyramid/zx12_hugger_met_green.jpg

and maybe orange rims. With some decals that have black & orange to tie it all together. Cool Just my opinion...

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Supersoul
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2008 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That metallic green is sweet. Interestingly enough, I ended up with "electric" green, which was the only choice I had. This scooter was a true leftover (brand new 2006 model) that the dealer obviously had a real hard time selling. This color would NOT have been my first choice, but was the reason I got it so cheaply. Hell, I really did not care what color it was, as I was more interested in scoring the best deal I could. In retrospect, it's probably a good choice because the color makes it hard to ignore and thus may increase my visibility to other vehicles.

One thing I forgot to mention to you all is that my condo is oceanfront and I have no garage. I am so close to the water that salt spray from the surf covers everything. I gave up on buying nice cars because they rot out within a few years. Just another reason to go the inexpensive route. Anything I buy and have to leave outside, by definition, has to be disposable. Sad, but true.

On a happier note, I am so glad to be back on two wheels again. I had forgotten just how much fun motor scooters are!!! I haven't even driven my car once since I got the scooter.
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Syd
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 05, 2008 12:38 am    Post subject: Re: Not Conflicted Anymore! Reply with quote

Supersoul wrote:
If you want to kick me out of the Buddy forum, I will understand Smile Supersoul


Jeez, they let me post here, why not you?

I had read good things about Taiwan Golden Bee, and if the 150cc model of this one http://www.cobrasales.com/delivery.htm had been available locally in stock when I was looking I would have jumped on it. UGLY or what?! But ugly like a Nash Metropolitan or Karmann Ghia. Ya just gotta love it.

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twharton
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 05, 2008 3:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To love ugly is to know true love.....


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KRUSTYburger
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 05, 2008 3:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AAWww... boston terriers aren't ugly!
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twharton
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 05, 2008 11:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
AAWww... boston terriers aren't ugly!


Agreed...that was / is my point.

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DarbyWalters
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I say ride both and see how they fit you...how they ride...how they appeal to you asthetically..and disreguard price at first. If you can't decide based on those factors buy the one that saves you money. If the Buddy 150 is hands down better, spend the extra money. If you like the TGB Laser better then you win twice.

Don't feel bad...I just traded in my Lambretta DUE50cc. I went down to test ride the Buddy 150cc and Lmabretta UNO 150cc. Price difference here also. Performance was about dead even...Looks:one is more retro and the other is more modern...both looked good to my eye...Fit was much better for "me" on the Lambretta (it has a very large foot area fore to aft). The PGO vs GY6 (Honda based) was really a tossup.

Got the Lambretta 150cc to replace the Lmabretta 50cc. Turn riding from a "chore" to "pure pleasure". I should have test rode the 150cc the first time...live and learn!

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