People looking for something a little different, or just for a lower cost touring scoot will find the Atlantic 200 to be a delight.
Full maxi-scooter amenities
Better MPG than a larger maxi
Marginal highway power
Small owner community
APRILIA ATLANTIC 200
The Atlantic 200 was a smaller sibling to Aprilia’s Atlantic 500 maxi-scooter. After several years of fairly strong sales for the Atlantic 500, Aprilia expanded their Atlantic line with smaller 125 and 200 models. These smaller Atlantic’s debuted in some countries for 2003 but only the 200 version reached the USA and Canada as part of Aprilia’s 2004 scooter lineup.
Unfortunately USA scooter sales were slow in 2004 – and particularly for the Atlantic 200. While the Atlantic 200 would be sold until 2006 in other parts of the world (and continue on after that as the Atlantic 250 and then 300 as it’s sold today), 2004 was the last North American’s saw of this scooter. Perhaps it had something to do with Piaggio’s recent acquisition of Aprilia or perhaps Aprilia was just figuring out what scooters sell well in North America, but in any case Aprilia stopped offering all their Atlantic models in North America after 2004.
The Atlantic 200 was powered by a 198cc version of Piaggio’s LEADER engine. In varying forms, this engine could be found in every mid-sized Piaggio scooters at the time. The particular version used in the Atlantic 200 was a liquid cooled, 4-valve, carbureted version putting out 20 HP. Virtually the same engine is found in Vespa’s GT200 scooter and Piaggio’s BV200. This LEADER design is a solid, reliable engine that offers above average power, while lagging a bit in fuel mileage compared to similar sized competitors. The Atlantic 200 tends to post about 55mpg.
The power output of this engine is quite good for its size, which makes the Atlantic 200 capable of around 80mph. This scooter can easily cruise with any 250cc scooter on the market like Yamaha’s Morphous, but it’s still not as powerful on the highway as its touring oriented looks imply. While the Atlantic 200 can cruise around 80mph, top speed is going to be lower up hills or when utilizing the Atlantic 200’s two person seat.
The result is that the Atlantic 200 is a bit of an oddity in the maxi-scooter scene with a motor less than half the size of a typical maxi-scooter (400-650cc). The result is a compromise where you trade some highway passing ability and outright cruising speed for superior mpg. The Atlantic 200 really shines for riders on a budget who can save with the Atlantic 200’s lower purchase price, smaller gas bills and reduced insurance costs. The Atlantic 200 is a practical maxi-scooter for many people, although speed fans and people who carry a passenger regularly should seek out a higher powered machine.
The Atlantic 200 looks like a scaled down version of its big brother. The overall look is the same, but few parts are interchangeable as everything has been shrunk. There’s 13” wheels instead of 14”, the windscreen is a bit smaller, the wheelbase is a bit shorter and the weight is down a full 80 lbs. to 352 lbs. Despite being a little smaller, the Atlantic 200 is a still a long scooter. There’s no confusing it for anything but a maxi-scoot. One look at the Atlantic 200 and you can tell it’s oriented at the touring crowd. The overall look works well, especially the back end which has nice lines with the integrated blinkers and tail lights in the haunches.
Brakes / Suspension / Handling
The Atlantic 200 has a definite maxi-scooter feel to the handling, but it is a little more nimble thanks to its lower weight and shorter wheelbase. At 57.8”, the wheelbase is 3-4” shorter than most 400-600cc maxi-scooters. The Atlantic 200 weighs in at 352 lbs, while some maxi-scoots post almost 600 lbs. (Burgman 650). The lower weight and smaller size makes the Atlantic 200 a good choice for smaller riders who are looking for the maxi-scooter experience.
The Atlantic 200 is stopped by disc brakes front and rear, with a 240mm disc up front and fairly small 190mm disc in the rear. There’s not dual front discs like some maxi’s, nor are the brakes particularly powerful, but they are up to the task of stopping this smaller maxi. Owners generally report average braking performance, which is an improvement over some scooters that use a weak drum brake in the rear.
Storage & Convenience
Embodying the maxi-scooter spirit, the Atlantic 200 offers riders a plethora of storage and convenience features. The underseat storage is quite large and capable of swallowing two helmets, provided both of them aren’t large full face ones. There’s also a 12 V accessory socket under the seat for charging your phone or computer. The underseat storage area is wide enough to swallow any laptop. Rounding out the storage capacity is a good sized locking glovebox, which is handy spot for your papers, snacks and other small items.
In terms of convenience, the Atlantic 200 has a windscreen that is large enough to shield the driver, while not being quite as generous as the larger Atlantic. There’s also a standard luggage rack which you can attempt to utilize on your own, or you can add a top box from Piaggio or an aftermarket company. Piaggio sold a number of options including a tall windscreen with hand guards, leg shields, ‘Touring’ bags and a passenger backrest. Rounding out the optional goodies was an anti-theft system and a neat radio with ‘Mob Control’ that could juggle radio, intercom between passengers and mobile phone calls. This was fancy stuff for 2004.
The Atlantic 200 continued the spirit of the original maxi scooter – Honda’s Helix – as a physically smaller and moderately powered maxi-scooter that still offers the full range of comfort and convenience features. This scooter is a great choice for buyers who are looking for a more affordable maxi, or smaller riders that will find a lighter and physically smaller scooter more comfortable to handle. The Altantic 200’s motor does a good job cranking out power for its size, but it’s still about the minimum you’d want to take on the highway. Make sure your expectations are in line with what a 198cc motor can provide.
Other scooters that hit a similar audience are Honda’s Helix, Yamaha’s Morphous and a few scooters from Kymco like the Xciting 250, Grandvista 250 and Downtown 200i. More recently, Suzuki entered this market segment with their 2014 Burgman 200. The Morphous is really nice and offers similar benefits to the Atlantic 200 with a more modern and distinct look, but at a higher price. The Kymco scooters are good options for people looking to buy a newer scooter while still keeping the cost around $5g. Overall, the Atlantic 200 is a neat mini-maxi scooter. People looking for something a little different, or just for a lower cost touring scoot will find the Atlantic 200 to be a delight.