Tim O'Brien | Aug 30, 2008

Piaggio Australia has sliced $1000 off the price of its three-wheeled MP3 400, but you still get three wheels (in case you’re wondering). The amazing-looking 400cc maxi scooter is now available for $10,990 (plus ORC)

Big, stylish and astonishingly stable thanks to its dual-wheeled front, the MP3 400’s liquid-cooled 400cc four-valve engine produces a respectable 25Kw at 7500rpm and 38Nm of torque at 6500rpm. (There is also a 250cc version for a few less shekels.) There is some great footage of these three-wheelers in action on YouTube.

PIAGGIO-MP3-400-TMR-1

On uneven and wet surfaces, thanks to the dual independent tilting wheels (providing a lean angle of up to 40 degrees), few can match the handling and stability of the three-wheelers. There is also a front suspension locking and release system - ‘locking’ into the upright position when brought to a standstill – to keep the show upright at the lights or when parking (no doubt appealing to some smaller riders who worry about holding up a larger machine).

“The three-wheel concept has been well received in Australia with our diverse conditions, and it has been widely endorsed in the media. We simply wanted to make this model even more affordable for weekday commuters and weekend tourers," Piaggio Brand Manager Simon Gloyne said.

The MP3s are type-approved as standard two-wheeled motorcycles. This means licensing and registration requirements are the same as for a motorcycle. A two year unlimited kilometre warranty comes as standard with the MP3 400.

For a test ride on the MP3, or the third member of the three-wheel brethren, the Fuoco 500ie ($12,990), give your local Piaggio dealer a yell. www.piaggio.com.au/dealers