A Brand New Chinese Made Scooter off Craig’s List for $999.00… How Bad Can It be?
Many visitors to our shop ask us just how bad those cheap Chinese scooters can be…. given that they are allowed to be sold here in the states. The fast and honest answer by anybody that works in the Powersport Industry will tell you that they are unreliable, difficult (if not impossible) to service and potentially threatening to both life and limb of the rider. If a person were to really think things through about these vehicles, they would realize that the mass produced Chinese scooter industry is just like the mass produced Chinese microwave, DVD or toaster industry. China has built billion dollar empires on the premise that they sell things that function for a short period of time, and when they break, consumers throw them away. The same goes for their scooters.
An additional problem for Chinese scooter owners is finding legitimate shops that will work on them. Because parts are difficult – if not impossible – to source, and quality is so poor, most shop owners will turn Chinese scooter owners away for service. Some owners will try to repair their Chinese scooter themselves. But they quickly realize they cannot locate the exact parts they need. And, most of the parts you can get online for cheap Chinese scooters are going to be the same cheap quality as the ones that broke in the first place. So why replace bad parts with more bad parts? And while installing replacement parts, the build quality of Chinese bikes is so poor, it practically guarantees that you will break or damage more parts trying to get at the part you are trying to replace!
There have been so many of these poorly manufactured vehicles pouring into our country by importers looking to make a fast buck, that even the Department of Transportation is considering banning many of the importers from bringing their vehicles unless they can pass certain build and quality standards that are currently not in place.
The old saying ‘Ya get what ya pay for’ could not be more valid in the discussion over Chinese made scooters, so Buyers Beware.