I always thought when purchasing any kind of motorcycle that I would stick with known Japanese or even British manufacturers. Three years ago I found myself living in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. As I travel around Asia with a small dog on board my motorbike, manual bikes are not so practical as she will only sit on my lap. I had a Honda FTR 223 for a while but each time I changed gear I felt like she was going to fall off, into oncoming traffic. A friend of mine had a 6 month old Sym Attilla 125 automatic scooter for sale for 750USD so I took it for a spin, with the dog on board to test it. I was pleasantly surprised with the bikes acceleration and it’s ability to avoid any other vehicles ( if you have ever driven in large Asian cities you will realise why being able to maneuver easily is vital!).
I had only ever seen Sym motorbikes before in Vietnam so was a little concerned about obtaining any parts. I then noticed that a lot of motorcycles in Cambodia that are used to pull tuk tuk carts were Sym. Therefore, I realized the parts must be available, so I decided to buy the bike. In my lifetime I have owned around 10 different motorcycles and have to admit the Sym Attila scooter has by far been the most reliable. In 3 years I estimate I have spent around 200USD on maintaining the bike and have driven around 15000 kilometres on it.
Next time anyone suggests you avoid Taiwanese,or Chinese motorcycles, think again. As with Korean car manufacturing, they have come a very long way.