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Piaggio Vespa scooter to hit roads again
Italian two-wheeler company Piaggio is all set to revive the Vespa scooter brand in India on by 2011 through its Indian arm. The company had launched the cult scooter brand in 1950s. Then it relaunched the brand in 1960s, 1980s and 1990s in association with the Firodias first and later with LML.

But this time, the all new Vespa from Piaggio will be a 125cc gearless scooter that will hit the market late next year.

“This is the first time that Piaggio is coming on its own. The company is setting up a 1,50,000 unit per year capacity plant at Baramati in Maharashtra with an investment of around Rs 180 crore,” Ravi Chopra, Piaggio Vehicles chairman and managing director said on the sidelines of Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers' (Siam) annual conference on Thursday.

Commenting on the company's expansion strategy, Chopra said that India is a significant market for Piaggio, and, therefore, it wants to have a significant presence here. The company is also planning to launch a 0.5 tonne mini-truck in the next two to three weeks. Piaggio India sells three-wheeler passenger and commercial and four-wheeler light commercial vehicles. “We hope to complete the current financial year with sales of 2,00,000 units," Chopra said.

In India, Vespa had a chequered run. It dominated the Indian roads for 20 years, in collaboration with the Firodias. But the Indira Gandhi government declined to renew its licence in 1971 paving way for the famous Bajaj 'Chetak'.
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