Review of the Kymco Like 200i
UPDATE - April 2011 - Kymco has
lowered the price on the Kymco Like 2011 to $2,599
Scooter buyers in the USA prefer retro scooter designs. The basic shape of the
classic Vespa design is what US consumers seem to be drawn to in scooters. I can
certainly see some Vespa LX in the new Kymco Like, and maybe even some classic
Lambretta in the cowl area. The rest of the world purchases more "modern"
scooters. Scooters with aerodynamic shapes and more rider protection from wind,
rain and road dirt. Scooters like the Kymco People 'S' and the Kymco Yager
GT200i. The Kymco Like is available in 2-stroke 50cc and 4-stroke 163cc
versions. It is the 163cc that we reviewed.
Let's get the whole "name" thing out of the way. "Like" is not, in my opinion, a
good name for a scooter. Then again Kymco doesn't have much of a reputation for
picking names that will do well in the US market. The "Bet and Win" (yes,
it's a real scooter name) did NOT sell well here despite the fact that it's
a very fine scooter. I believe the name had a lot to do with the poor sales. The
thing I don't like about the "Like" is the 200 part of the name. It has a 163cc
engine, closer to 150 than 200. The same can be said for pretty much every "200"
scooter currently in the marketplace. Let's call them what they are folks.
I rode the Kymco Like 200i for several days and also passed it along to the very
brave Jordana who gave her opinions on the scooter.
Jordana normally rides a Genuine Buddy International 150
when she is not being pestered by yours truly to review something. I will
include Jordana's comments under "Jordana Says" a little later in this review.
Speedometer Reading/Speed/Fuel Economy
Minneapolis generously provided the Kymco Like 200i used for this review. It had
just a few miles on it when I picked it up. Before starting this review I had
heard from other people who had ridden the Like 200i previously that it was a
pretty "doggy" scooter. I don't know if the early production models were
different or it they had ridden a pre-production machine but that was NOT my
impression of the Like 200i. Acceleration off the line is brisk with the Like
200i, at least as quick as a Genuine Buddy 150. The mid-range roll-on
acceleration is also strong. I am fairly certain that the fuel injection on the
Like 200i is contributing to this. There is no "lag" in most places on the
throttle, just quick, smooth responsiveness.
with a GPS unit showed that the speedometer and odometer on the Like 200i are
quite accurate. They read about 5% optimistic which is to say that the
speedometer indicates about 5% faster than the actual speed. At an indicated
speed of 30 MPH the actual speed is 28.5 MPH. At an indicated 50 MPH the actual
speed is 47 MPH. I was able to get the Like 200i to an indicated 66 MPH which
was actually 63 MPH. A lighter pilot (about 150 lbs.) was able to get the
Like 200i to an indicated 70 MPH which was an actual top speed of 66 MPH. A
touch disappointing as I was expecting an actual top speed of 70 MPH. Fuel
economy during the review was 82 MPG. I consider this quite good as the scooter
was NOT broken in and was being ridden hard. After break-in under normal riding
conditions I would expect 90 MPG out of the Like 200i.
Kymco Like 200i is powered by a 163cc fuel injected forced-air cooled
engine. A CVT (Continuously Variable Transmisssion) transfers power
automatically. Disc brakes front AND rear handle stopping chores and a
telescopic fork up front along with dual shocks in the rear make up the
suspension. The Like 200i rides on 12 inch rubber front and rear. Before we look
at scooters from competitors, I thought is would be interesting to look at
Kymco's other offerings in this size class. Both the Kymco Like 200i and the
People 'S' 200 utilize a 163cc powerplant. The People sits on bigger (16 inch)
tires and is carbureted. For an MSRP that is just $100 higher, the Yager 200GT
offer BOTH liquid cooling and fuel injection. All three machines have different
and distinct designs.
For competitor comparison, I selected the Vespa
LX150i, new from Piaggio with fuel injection and the Honda
SH150, also fuel injected. Both these machines are 150s, which is close to the
Like's 163 displacement. Both are significantly more expensive. These are likely
to be representative examples of other machines that the potential Like 200i
buyer might be considering.
The Kymco Like 200i comes well-equipped with a nice
dash that includes a clock and fairly accurate fuel gauge. There is a
colour-matched trunk that is also included. The trunk appears well made and did
NOT rattle at all during testing. It's a good thing that the trunk is there
because there is precious little storage space on the Like otherwise. There is a
small glove box up front, but it can only be accessed with the ignition key. Not
very user-friendly. If one's garage door opener is in the glove box,
must shut off the scooter and remove the key from the ignition to open the glove
box, activate the door opener and then re-start the scooter to place it in the
garage. One very nice feature inside the glove box is a power socket. I like
this location better than the more typical under-the-seat location. I tried to put a three-quarter sized helmet under the seat and the
storage area was so shallow I couldn't close the seat. Of course the trunk
easily accepted the helmet. The fuel filler is also located under the seat.
There are nice flip-out foot rests for a passenger and the seat is easily big
enough to accommodate two.
The low/high beam headlight switch on the left-hand
control includes a flash-to-pass function that is nice to have. All of the
switches and controls appear to be high quality.
As mentioned earlier, the Kymco Like 200i has brisk acceleration and I found it
to be fun to ride. The suspension was adequate to the task at hand and returned
a fairly smooth and stable ride. Braking was VERY good. Not quite to the level
of a Genuine Blur, but that rear disc really makes a
difference in hard braking compared to scooter with a drum brake in the back.
There is one issue with riding the Like 200i and that is the ergonomics of the
Like 200i has a seat height of just over 30 inches - generally a good thing for
those of us with shorter inseams. The issue is the relative height of the
floorboards. As you can see from the picture, Jordana (who has a 32 inch
inseam and is 5' 5" tall) could not find a comfortable position. She had
very little leg room and her knees were close to hitting the legshields. If
Jordana pushed back further on the seat, she couldn't easily reach the
handlebars. With a 30 inch inseam, I didn't have quite the same issue, but I can
see how this limits who can comfortably fit on a like 200i. Check the seating
position carefully when considering this (or ANY scooter) for purchase.
Fit and Finish
Kymco has a well-deserved reputation for quality and value. The Like 200i has
very nice fit and finish. The seat cover material was a little loose on our test
model and the rear grab-rails seemed kind of flimsy. Otherwise all the
components appeared to be very high quality. The assembly of the scooter is very
good with all panels fitting well. The color and finish are excellent. I have
reviewed several Kymco scooters and own a Kymco People People 250 and can say
with complete confidence that they are the equal of any other manufacturer when
it comes to quality.
The Kymco Like 200i is OK. It seems big and feels like I'm sitting in an
oversized chair because the seating position is weird. Also some of the
components feel cheap (seat cover, plastic passenger grab-rails), and the
glove compartment is inconvenient because it doesn't have the option to keep it
unlocked with a push button open. I see why the top case is included (not
much in the way of underseat storage). The case did hold all my packages
nicely when I went to the Post Office, though. It does accelerate smoothly and
feels pretty substantial in terms of engine. I like the display and the clock.
It was surprisingly easy to get up on the center stand for its bulk.
The Kymco Like 200i is a well-made scooter that offers good performance up to
about 60 MPH. I expect it to be reliable and durable and to return good fuel
economy. It does have some ergonomic issues that will limit it's appeal, be sure
and check out the seating position for YOU when shopping for this or any
UPDATE - April 2011 - Kymco has
lowered the price on the Kymco Like 2011 to $2,599