Sunday, November 3


There were several versions of
the new Piaggio 150 on display: this
white version with a high front guard
being one of them.
PIAGGIO branded motorcycles were on display at the 12th annual China International Motorcycle in Chongqing.  In the past the Italian company has only used its name on some of the scooters it makes, not motorcycles. 

Italian Piaggio Group’s presence at CIMAMotor 2013 was through its joint venture with Zongshen, the number six ranked Chinese manufacturer.

In addition to a range of Vespas, a lone Moto Guzzi in the form of a Bellagio cruiser and an Aprilia 850 Mana, the Piaggio-Zongshen joint venture company also displayed a range of smartly styled 125cc and 150cc motorycles in a variety of colours and styles.

These new motorcycles had Piaggio written in large capitals on the fuel tank, with the word Zongshen in smaller letters underneath.

One was called 'Robinson Robinson', another was the "Robinson Cross Country' and then there was  the 'New Style', the 'New Fashion' and the 'New Hurrican', the 'City Impression' and the 'Tory', as well as the 'Tory Troy Standard Editiion.'

All are powered by single cylinder overhead cam air-cooled four-stroke engines of either 126 or 149cc displacement.
- Michael Esdaile

There were high guard (above) and low guard (below)
versions of the new Piaggio 150 on display at 
CIMAMotor 2013

In addition to the Piaggio motorcycles, Vespa scooters and a lone Aprilia 850 Mana, the Piaggio-Zongshen joint venture also displayed a new Moto Guzzi Bellagio.

Piaggio-Zongshen Joint Venture:
This was established on April 16, 2004 with the visit of Wen Jiabao, sixth Premier of the People's Republic of China, to the Piaggio Group's headquarters in Pontedera, Italy.  There he was welcomed by Piaggio Group Chairman Roberto Colaninno, Chief Executive Officer Rocco Sabelli and by management and Piaggio employees to celebrate the signing of a joint venture with ZongShen.  
This came after 32 months of negotiations brought to an end a sorry first chapter of the Italian company’s foray into the China market.   Its original joint venture, Piaggio Foshan Motorcycle Co. Ltd., had lost about $US60 million since it was formed in 1994.  
In the new JV,  Chongqing-based Zongshen Industrial Group (China) gained a 45% stake in the new company - ZongShen Piaggio Foshan Motorcycle Co. Ltd. -  in exchange for guaranteeing repayment of an undisclosed amount of the original joint venture company’s debt.  In turn, Piaggio licensed advanced technology to a Zongshen Group-owned motorcycle engine company that will sell engines to the joint venture. 

The two partners have equal shares in the venture (45 per cent each), while the remaining 10 per cent is held by the Foshan Municipal Authority.

The JV has a registered capital $US29.8 million.

ZongShen Piaggio Foshan Motorcycle Co. Ltd. began production on June 25, 2005 and is located in  Foshan in Gaundong Province, 28 kilometers from Guangzhou. The population is about 320,000.

The factory occupies an area of 110,000 square metres.  It is the biggest and most advanced Piaggio overseas plant with a R & D and QC orientation, which includes physical and chemical lab, automatic robot welding and plastic parts painting.  Production capacity is up to 500,000 units per year.