Outside of the obvious "for protection" - is there any other reason to have the heat shield? It looks so muck nicer and streamlined without it. I find the shield makes the muffler look twice as big.
Yes, and if you drop the bike, as I did once it will cost you both arms and your privates to replace it when it's wrecked after road contact. I have stuck 3 strips of chromed plastic beading on my new one in case of a repeat.Aside from the safety angle, it's also useful for fending off small scuffs. Back into, park between, or simply get the scoot caught a tight confined space, then that muffler protector does as intended IMO.