1967 Lambretta Li150 Series 3 Scooter,
Registration no. KRU 251F, as ridden by Phil Daniels ('Jimmy') in the film 'Quadrophenia', 1979,
Manufactured by the Italian industrial giant Innocenti, the Lambretta motor scooter, together with the rival Piaggio-built Vespa, mobilised an entire generation of Italians in the immediate post-war years. The scooter gained instant acceptance everywhere, its cleanliness and convenience in particular appealing to those who regarded the true motorcycle with suspicion. Scooters would eventually surpass their strictly utilitarian origins to become an integral part of British youth culture in the 1960s as favourite transport of the fashion-conscious Modernists, or Mods. The scooters enclosed engine and decent weather protection meant that its rider could arrive at a club, doff his parka and look like hed just stepped out of a taxi, which was a definite advantage within a dandified sub-culture that placed a premium on smartness of appearance.
Introduced in 1947, the Lambretta scooter went through a series of mechanical and stylistic evolutions before arriving at the Li series in 1958. One of Lambrettas all-time greats, the Li resulted from the relative failure of the unreliable TV 175 Series 1, which forced the company to go back to the drawing board. Built in 125cc and 150cc capacities, the classic Li used the bore/stroke dimensions of the preceding D Series but housed its entirely new engine in modern bodywork similar to that of the TV. The Li subsequently underwent a series of styling alterations, the Series 3 being readily distinguishable by its handlebar-mounted headlight and slimline styling, embodying what for many enthusiasts is the definitive Lambretta look.