PIAGGIO TYPHOON 50
This page is a reference for the original Piaggio Typhoon sold from 2005 to 2008 in North America. For the second generation of typhoon (introduced in 2012) please see the Typhoon 50 / 125 page.
The original Typhoon was Piaggio’s fat wheeled sporty 50cc during the early years of their return to North America. It was sold in the USA from 2005 – 2008 and in Canada from 2006 – 2008 It was discontinued likely due to the same emissions regulations that chased the Kymco Super 9 LC from our shores and forced Yamaha to re-work the Zuma’s 50cc 2-stroke motor to lower its emissions (and power). The Typhoon seemed to be a good seller for Piaggio. The styling was edgy and the engine and brakes were able to back up the sporty look. Outside North America, the original Typhoon went on sale way back in 1993, so it’s quite a well established model in some markets. Over 500,000 copies were sold worldwide, which is quite impressive.
After 2008, North American’s weren’t offered the Typhoon (until the new Typhoon 50 / 125 was introduced) even though it continued to be sold in many countries overseas for a few more years before meeting its general demise. It’s impressive that the original Typhoon managed to sell well for a 17 year run (1993-2010) worldwide and that it looks fairly modern for a scooter so old.
Design and Amenities
The Typhoon 50 was sold in regular and special ‘Norman Haas’ edition (SE) trims for the first couple years. Both versions got you a great Brembo disc brake up front, sporty styling and a peppy 2-stroke motor. The Typhoon has a fairly nice dash setup with a tasteful palette of gauges including a tachometer. On the downside, there is no glovebox so storage is limited to the reasonably sized underseat area.
One unique aspect of the Typhoon’s design was the inverted front forks. These forks minimize the unsprung wheel weight for better handling over choppy pavement. They also look pretty cool like a high end sport bike.
The original Piaggio Typhoon used an air cooled 2-stroke “Hi-PER2” motor. This engine is the same motor found in other 2-stroke 50cc models from the Piaggio group, including Vespa’s ET2 50 and Piaggio’s 2-stroke Fly 50 scooter. In its stock from, the Typhoon was capable of about 35-40mph, but it can be unrestricted fairly easily to achieve around 45mph. Being a 2-stroke, acceleration is quite peppy which makes this scooter a good choice for heavier riders. There are also a good selection of aftermarket parts available for this scooter, which is one of the benefits of sharing a motor with other popular scooters.
With it’s sporty looks and fat tires, the Typhoon competed with scooters like Yamaha’s Zuma/BWs 50 and Kymco’s Super 8 & Super 9 models. While not one of the most popular scooters, the Typhoon seems to have sold moderately well. The only real downsides to the Typhoon 50 are the lack of a glovebox and the normal downsides that come with any 2-stroke scooter (gas milage, emissions, shorter engine life). Overall, the Piaggio Typhoon 50 is a great scooter for anyone looking for a peppy 2-stroke sports scooter and doesn’t want a Zuma / BWs 50 like everyone seems to buy.
- Sharp styling
- Brembo front brake
- Peppy motors
- Aircraft gauges
- Smaller owner scene than some competitors
- 2-stroke mileage
ModernVespa – These forums are a good spot to find other owners
MotorscooterGuide Forums – Visit the forums on this site to chat about this scoot
ScooterSwapShop – Aftermarket parts for the Gen 1 Typhoon
Key Specs – Typhoon 50 2-stroke (2005 – 2008):
- Engine: Air cooled, 2-stroke, 49cc Hi-PER2
- Power: 5.1 HP
- Transmission: CVT
- Bore & Stroke: 40mm x 39.3mm
- Compression Ratio: 10.3:1
- Fuel Delivery: Carbureted
- Wheelbase: 50.4”
- Weight: 178.6 lbs
- Starter: Electric and Kick
- Seat height: 30.5”
- Fuel Tank: 1.45 gallon / 5.5 Liter
- Brakes: 190mm Disc (Front), 100mm Drum (Rear)
- Front Suspension: Telescoping Fork
- Rear Suspension: Single Shock,
- Tires: 120/90-10 (Front and Rear)
- Years Sold: 2005 – 2008 (USA) 2006 – 2008 (Canada)
- MSRP: $1999 (USA 2007)
- Colors: Mistral Electric Blue (aka Cosmic Blue), Black