ADVrider

ADVrider (http://www.advrider.com/forums/index.php)
-   Battle scooters (http://www.advrider.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=36)
-   -   SYM HD 200 EVO? Any thoughts? (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=779851)

Dabears 04-07-2012 07:39 PM

SYM HD 200 EVO? Any thoughts?
 
Went to our local Vespa, Genuine, SYM dealer today to look at options for something to carry behind our RV. SYM wasn't on my radar, but after sitting on a variety of scooters and comparing specs the HD200 seems to bubble up to the top.

It's water cooled, has front and rear disk brakes, and while it has a carb instead of FI, the top speed seems to rival some larger scooters. Price was near $1000 less than a comparable 150cc Vespa. It's under 300 lbs, and is supposed to carry two up reasonably well.

I did not test ride it, as I wanted to do some research first. My wife actually liked the matte gray color, which to me made the not too exciting appearance tolerable.

I am familiar with the whole previous Carter brothers debacle. It sounds like Alliance is working hard on repairing the damage to the US image.

I'd like to hear from any of you who have experience with SYM, and especially the HD 200. This is NOT my dream scooter, I'm trying to find a solution that will allow me to avoid towing a car. If it turns out that this is a comfortable, reliable scooter that can keep up with traffic I could use it for work as well. How bout it scooter junkies? Any words of wisdom? :ear

wanna bECO 04-07-2012 08:04 PM

have you read this review?
http://www.justgottascoot.com/symhd200.htm

Dabears 04-07-2012 08:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wanna bECO (Post 18404488)

Actually I read that one some time ago and completely forgot about it- thanks for the link! I guess the only difference is the new ones have the rear disk rather than drum....It was a good review- just the kind of info I'm looking for.

brianwheelies 04-07-2012 09:32 PM

I worked for a SYM dealer briefly and although I did not ride the bike I did gather some opinion of the bike and SYM.

The bike feels like a quality build. Suspension and braking action feels good just from pushing the bike around. Seating position seems good for bigger riders and has good floorboard space that is flat.

Maintenance is a bit on the high side in my opinion. I think it was every 1,000 miles you were changing the oil or adjusting the valves. Also, the parts prices for genuine SYM replacement parts is very high. An accident could equal a total loss through insurance very quickly. Maintenance parts, still costly. Parts that are not available can often leave you down for weeks waiting for them to arrive.

The knowledge gained above is what steered me away and looking into other options.

kconville 04-07-2012 09:56 PM

I wanted to buy a Sym HD200 a year and a half ago, or so. I road two and was favorably impressed. Couldn't buy one however because of the distribution debacle. I still have little confidence in parts availability, and of course the aftermarket is pretty well non-existent.

I don't think Sym is ready for prime time, in the US anyway.

I wound up getting a Vespa GTS 300 last summer and I couldn't be happier. A very refined, powerful, good handling, low maintenance scooter with great dealer support, parts availability, and the best aftermarket (by far) of any scooter.

I wouldn't bother with a small frame Vespa (150cc) based on what your intended use is. The large frame (200-300cc) Vespas are the way to go I think. If the cost of new is outside your budget there are usually low mileage 250s from time to time. The 200s are carbureted BTW.

My 300 gets 70mpg and has great power and brakes and for two up duty is far superior to smaller scoots.

alphaBETAdog 04-08-2012 09:36 AM

I had a good long test ride on a HD200 (the rear drum brake version) and thought it was a very good scooter, but had an oportunity to buy my Scarabeo instead, but if not I would have bought the Sym. Nice quality scoot.

However, for your intended use, I would strongly consider the Vespa GTS 300 as it has real nice tie down points. Strapping a scooter down securely is very difficult, but with the Vespa tie down points on the frame it looks easy-peasy.

wanna bECO 04-08-2012 03:19 PM

if you're really traveling, thien I would suggest an FI model

ferrix 04-08-2012 10:52 PM

I don't know about your distribution situation but the scooter is rock solid. I've had mine from new for just under three years now and with over 18,000kms on the clock I couldn't fault it. Not as much as a broken light bulb and it might not have EFI but I don't care because it still starts the first time, every time. I admit it is not the most exciting looking scooter on the market, but its beauty is more than skin-deep. The only thing I don't like is its small(ish) storage space.

Dabears 04-09-2012 06:31 AM

Thanks for the replies all. I like the Vespa 300 GTS, but it's heavier, much more expensive, and remember- this is going to hang off the back of a carrier, so it's going to be prone to scratches and dings, weather and road crud and I would be really concerned about theft. The 'beauty' of a SYM or Kymco is that they don't have brand recognition, and would likely not be a target. Truth told most folks wouldn't know it's not a Chinese scooter sold through Pep Boys.

While I'm a Vespa fan, I also found that my wife thought the footpeg position on the SYM was considerably better for her short legs. I'm also thinking that if we're going to be exploring unfamiliar roads I would prefer to have the larger diameter wheels.

I need to check weight on a BV200 and BV250- they're hard to find, but I'd still be able to stay with the Piaggio drivetrain and brand without the Vespa 'steal me now' look, and at a lesser price point.

Canuman 04-09-2012 06:46 AM

I had an '06 HD200 for a while, which I bought in '08 as a leftover. They are a rock-solid scooter. Amazing get-up-and-go for a 175cc machine. The bike will do 70+ on top with a large fellow aboard, while returning 70 mpg. I had no maintenance issues at all. The oil change interval is short, but the whole procedure takes less than ten minutes to do, and can be easily accomplished roadside. The fit and finish equals anything out there, and is significantly better than many more expensive machines.

I've had the opportunity to see several other SYM models, and was never less than favorably impressed.

I also own an Aprilia Scarabeo 500ie. There are FAR more headaches involved with the Piaggio/Vespa/Aprilia stuff. (They are all Piaggio bikes in the end.)

klaviator 04-09-2012 06:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dabears (Post 18412881)
Thanks for the replies all. I like the Vespa 300 GTS, but it's heavier, much more expensive, and remember- this is going to hang off the back of a carrier, so it's going to be prone to scratches and dings, weather and road crud and I would be really concerned about theft. The 'beauty' of a SYM or Kymco is that they don't have brand recognition, and would likely not be a target. Truth told most folks wouldn't know it's not a Chinese scooter sold through Pep Boys.

While I'm a Vespa fan, I also found that my wife thought the footpeg position on the SYM was considerably better for her short legs. I'm also thinking that if we're going to be exploring unfamiliar roads I would prefer to have the larger diameter wheels.



I need to check weight on a BV200 and BV250- they're hard to find, but I'd still be able to stay with the Piaggio drivetrain and brand without the Vespa 'steal me now' look, and at a lesser price point.

If it was me, I'd probably go with the Sym HD200 but here's a couple of more options: Riders Hill / European Motorsports in Dahlonega has really great prices on their Aprilia Scooters. They have the Scarabeo 200 which might fit your needs as well as the Sport City 250 which they are selling for around $3200. I believe the Sport City is the lightest of all the 250cc scooters and it works well 2 up. The Scarabeo 200 also looks like a nice scooter and will probably also cost you less than the Sym HD200. The disadvantage is that Aprilia dealers are few and far between. As for getting parts, the few parts I have needed have either been in stock or came in within a few days.

Here's a couple of ride reports I've done on my Sport City 250:

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=693143

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=694932

and a review of the Sport City:

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=695285

Dabears 04-09-2012 09:06 AM

Klaviator-

Believe me I have read with interest everything you've posted about your Aprilia, and I have thought about those as well. What to do, what to do...:huh....I now have two Vespa dealers within 20 minutes of me, and of course Vespa Marietta carries SYM as well. As you know two years ago we had no Vespa dealers at all...

I've not heard anything bad about SYM reliability (believe me I've looked hard). And the only three gripes I've found about the HD200 have been storage, a weak front caliper and too frequent service intervals. Guess I have to ride one soon, because I'd find it hard to believe anything could rival the crap brakes on my P200E.

The SYM is 30 pounds lighter than the Aprilia, which matters since I'll have to wrestle it onto the carrier...

Maybe somebody needs to be a guinea pig to test out whether Alliance can keep dealers supplied with SYM parts.

Dabears 04-09-2012 09:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Canuman (Post 18412967)
I had an '06 HD200 for a while, which I bought in '08 as a leftover. They are a rock-solid scooter. Amazing get-up-and-go for a 175cc machine. The bike will do 70+ on top with a large fellow aboard, while returning 70 mpg. I had no maintenance issues at all. The oil change interval is short, but the whole procedure takes less than ten minutes to do, and can be easily accomplished roadside. The fit and finish equals anything out there, and is significantly better than many more expensive machines.

I've had the opportunity to see several other SYM models, and was never less than favorably impressed.

I also own an Aprilia Scarabeo 500ie. There are FAR more headaches involved with the Piaggio/Vespa/Aprilia stuff. (They are all Piaggio bikes in the end.)

Canuman-

Thank you for the input- You've added to the small but vocal group that have been supportive of SYMs. Could I ask why you got rid of it? Any particular issue either with the scooter or the ergonomics that caused you to move on?

Dabears 04-09-2012 09:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ferrix (Post 18411772)
I don't know about your distribution situation but the scooter is rock solid. I've had mine from new for just under three years now and with over 18,000kms on the clock I couldn't fault it. Not as much as a broken light bulb and it might not have EFI but I don't care because it still starts the first time, every time. I admit it is not the most exciting looking scooter on the market, but its beauty is more than skin-deep. The only thing I don't like is its small(ish) storage space.

Ferrix-

Excellent info- thanks- Nice to hear reports of someone who has put lots of distance on one and no issues.

Question for you- do you do your own servicing? How frequent and hard are the valves to access and adjust?

Scootervillain 04-09-2012 09:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dabears (Post 18413914)

Maybe somebody needs to be a guinea pig to test out whether Alliance can keep dealers supplied with SYM parts.

Here's a post from February 2012 regarding parts availability from Alliance (specifically for the RV250, which Alliance doesn't import (yet!))...

http://symforum.com/index.php?topic=1636.0

It seems like they're getting their sh*t together; They had to start small due to limited capital, but they seem to be making the right moves.

I almost bought a new HD200 Evo, but ended up buying a leftover '09 SYM Citycom instead (out the door was $300 cheaper on the leftover Citycom). Also, I don't think you will need parts aside from an air filter or a belt for a good number of years, at least.

The Sport City is a fine scoot as well. I didn't care for the Scarabeo 200 that I test rode earlier this year (it was an '09 and the engine sounded awful on it, but it might have been that particular scoot).

I think you'd be fine with any of those bikes - seems like a nice dilemma to have :)


Times are GMT -7.   It's 09:55 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014