Best Scooter Shop, August 2009
Could anything be more 2009 than the scooter? Fuel efficient, freeway legal, and wallet friendly, this motorized vehicle—more powerful than a moped but not quite a motorcycle—is no longer limited to Italian lines like the Vespa and Piaggio. You can go to single-brand dealerships, but for more choices and a wider range of prices, try NoHo Scooters. The Vineland Avenue showroom sits under a mural depicting Marilyn, Elvis, and King Kong—a remnant of the property’s stint as a postproduction company. Inside, though, owner Mike Frankovich offers four modern scooter brands—including Genuine, which is based in Chicago, and Vectrix, an electric line—along with a handful of restored Italian classics. Genuine’s Buddy scooters start at $2,000, and a 500cc Xciting from Kymco, which tops out at 100 mph (20 mph faster than a comparable Vespa), sells for $6,500. Grab a glitter-finish helmet and a Corazzo riding jacket off the wall, and you’ll be ready to go.