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Vespa: the story of a legend from its origins to today



Vespa: the story of a legend from its origins to today


To describe the history of a country and a society over the years, we often take a cue from the main historical, political and economic facts. The cultural evolution of a people however, it requires much more attention, and apparently niche phenomena, technological inventions or “of the moment” fashions could represent much better the development and mutations of a society. It is with this spirit that Valerio Boni And Stefano Cordara they wanted to put together the pieces of the puzzle with the support of Piaggio Foundation. Thus was born “Vespa: the story of a legend from its origins to today“.

It is an illustrated edition that slavishly traces theevolution of the myth on two wheels from 1946 to the present day. This collection nostalgically pursues the history of the Vespa introducing, for the most passionate, the right amount of technical information on the various models: the details are so accurate as to describe hooks, colors, drawers and materials of each model put into production.

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The synergy with the beautiful country

A synthetically perfect introduction in which the importance of the human figure behind the various projects is highlighted through a safe contextualization: the Vespa could easily be used to describe the socio-economic evolution of the Bel Paese in many respects. One of the most striking perspectives of the book is in fact the synergy with which the various vintages are described, exposing and perfectly incorporating the geographical realities of production, distribution and exhibition, all offering an artistic, historical, economic and social framework; in other words cultural.

The notable quotes trace the fashions, tastes and needs of both engineers and gods top management of Piaggio both of consumers; an active and carefree generation that, after seeing the Italian industries converted to war production, is reborn and more than rightly asks for 110% of life. It is as if the small two-wheeler were one of the pieces of the puzzle of an entire generation, the subtle connection between two strands of DNA that put our way of being into practice.

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The images in the edition flawlessly highlight the humanity of the Vespa and all the people behind its design; there are many focuses on the production side. The final clientele also plays a central role: you can see how Piaggio cared about the needs and requirements of consumersas well as having glimpsed various market opportunities in advance.

The models that made history

Not only strengths but also defects: few or no descriptive details are left out and this shifts the balance of reading a little too much towards the descriptive list. One of the few flaws of the book could be the fact of dwelling on or repeating some details but the models are really many and a good part of the volume also deals with the Vespa stylefrom the artistic, marketing and communication point of view behind the product itself and all that series of gatherings, records and competitions surrounding this myth.

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Having said this, this eulogy to the iconic two-wheeler does not represent the classic “shopping list”: the style of the “The models that made history“At times it can make you lose concentration but the union of the various points, as the models are connected to each other, the accuracy and completeness only of those who know a lot make the reading fluid and worthwhile; the volume is not an essay or a historical novel, it represents a photographic and textual collection that traces the history of an international icon.

There are many interesting ideas and events such as, for example, the 90s period in which Vespa fights against the “plasticky” scooters, fashionable among young people, in favor of a purer relationship with tradition. We remind you that Piaggio is one of the main ferries, if not the most important, of the scooters for young people internationally.

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It’s hard not to love her

It is thanks to the market that Vespa is presented, almost presumptuously, as a cultural phenomenon; this statement is abundantly supported by the facts, first of all 19 million units sold. A piece of Italy in the hearts of many, even the youngest: the economic comparisons (Lira-Euro) with the current market make the monetary value of a product, such as the scooter, and of the whole surrounding environment perfectly understandable.

In conclusion, a volume for true connoisseurs of the Vespa also suitable for a light reading on the history of two wheels. There are many images and historical references capable of thrilling even “non-collectors” and mechanics enthusiasts.

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