Typical of the two styles of small scooters is the 2011 Honda Ruckus, which has a slightly rugged look, resembling a mini bike. The Ruckus has a 49cc one-cylinder, four-stroke engine (the more old-fashioned two-stroke engines burn oil), and weighs just under 200 pounds. Honda rates it at 114 miles per gallon. Top speed, Mullins said, is about 30 mph. Suggested retail price: $2,499. Even Honda calls the Ruckus “a bare-bones example of two-wheel transportation.”

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