A selection of otherwise tired vintage Vespas have been granted a new lease of life in Indonesia, where a festival dedicated to the iconic Italian scooter drew hundreds of fans.
It’s like a scene straight out of Mad Max.
With steampunk hoods and scrap-metal parts, these vintage Vespas are the stars of the show at this Indonesian festival dedicated to the iconic Italian scooter.
(SOUNDBITE) (Bahasa Indonesia) LEADER OF SCOOTER COMMUNITY IN EAST JAVA’S KEDIRI REGENCY, JUSUG IQBAL, SAYING:
“Usually in the auto industry, when’s something’s broken it gets replace. But not with Vespas – when a Vespa’s broken – we fix it. That’s the beauty of Vespas.”
Hundreds gathered to show off their own twist of extravagance.
Some splashed out to restore vintage models, while others could only afford to adorn it with junkyard goods.
The one golden rule:
every customized vehicle had to have a Vespa engine.
(SOUNDBITE) (Bahasa Indonesia) MEMBER OF SCOOTER COMMUNITY IN EAST JAVA’S LAMONGAN REGENCY, MAMAN, SAYING:
“I wouldn’t die satisfied if I’d never ridden a Vespa. But not a lot of kids these days are into them.”
It’s a love letter to a staple of daily life in Indonesia, where congested roads mean two wheels are better than four.
However, the nation usually opts for cheaper, utilitarian models.
Vespas are seen as a sign of luxury.
But the festival isn’t just about scooter swag, there’s a sense of community here.
The Vespa lovers say they help each other out when they have trouble on the road.
Many of them travel at night to avoid traffic police, because the bikes are often unlicensed.
And some of the more ramshackle machines are prone to breaking down.
But that too is just another labor of love for these enthusiasts who say:
“Vespa guys stick together.”