Vespa fans will delight in combing the pages of this history of the world's most recognizable scooter. Written in cooperation with the manufacturer, Piaggio, it tells the story of the scooter's origins in post-war Italy, when the rebuilding of the country necessitated an affordable and modern means of transport for the masses. Italian for "wasp", the term "Vespa" caught on quickly, but the scooter achieved international stardom when Audrey Hepburn hopped on Gregory Peck's Vespa in the film "Roman Holiday." As a result, a vehicle originally designed as utilitarian came to symbolize style, freedom and romance. The book includes a gatefold listing the Vespa models from 1943 to today along with images of Vespa's throughout the decades, including the most iconic designs as well as today's luxury editions. In colorful photographs and text this volume also traces the succession of technological and stylistic improvements that have helped maintain Vespa's status as one of the world's iconic scooter brands.
Valerio Boni is a sports journalist with a passion for motocycles. He is currently senior editor of the Italian magazine Panorama Auto. Azzurra Della Penna is a journalist who has worked for various Italian newspapers and magazines. She is based in Milan.