You can’t remember maybe Kawasaki EN 500, this custom of the 1990s engine to GPZ 500 having not had resounding success. However be aware that the new Kawasaki Vulcan S is somehow the worthy descendant.
But the comparison stops there, simply because the Vulcan S is a much more dynamic motorcycle in the spirit.
Kawasaki called power light cruiser, a marketing name that lends to smile, but not if spoofed it once at the controls. With its elongated Lighthouse way Suzuki Gladius, its rather technical physics, the Vulcan S differs markedly from the other customs of average displacement who more or less copy reference Harley-Davidson. There, we get closer instead of a mini Ducati Diavel.
Behind this singular physics but Kawasaki is customary because lately conceals an interesting initiative. The Japanese brand has chosen to offer adjustable ergonomics: saddle, handlebars and foot rests can be moved to improve the comfort of driving, whether large or small. Here is an idea that it is good, especially when you consider that the feet forward position is not always the ideal for short on legs.
Without being the lowest market (705 mm), saddle shows accessible to the small templates. From 1.60 m, you’re sure to put both feet flat. Startup suggests a known refrain: the staccato sound of twin of the ER – 6n evokes more a trail as a custom. Either. So, let’s see if the modification to the mechanics well modify its behavior.
Less flexible than a V-twin
It takes just a few kilometers to understand this change. Flexibility has indeed been reworked via changes in the inlet of the engine flywheel and mapping. You can descend 500 rpm lower on the interim reports with the roadster. It is already well, but parallel twin bangs even at low revs, always more than an equivalent V-twin OHV.
In common usage, the Vulcan S can resume to 2 500 rpm, but shows clearly its disapproval. Its engine still prefers to navigate more than 3 000 rpm. Then there is the substantial remain well trimmed in couple: overshoots in fifth, or sixth, at 90 km/h reassures. No need to downgrade: the couple and the liveliness of the twin doing the job.
The availability of this small engine is therefore really to go on the road. As announced in Kawasaki, a part of the resentment at high revs, characteristic of the block of the ER – 6n has disappeared. It is nevertheless possible to pursue the accelerations beyond 7 500 rpm, but the power then declines gradually
One way, especially the filling at midrange, a token of approval on road, and the versatility of this engine that accepts both cruiser to attack. For a bit, in road use between 80 and 120 km/h, this version of the twin 649 CC would almost give the illusion of more cuber. Not so bad!
The Bike not squirms
During the technical briefing, the Kawasaki staff have shown us all the work done on the round part of the Vulcan. And we must recognize that they are not gone with the back of the spoon: complete change of the frame Assembly/swingarm and suspension rod at the rear. At least, this shows the care taken in the design.
The grip, really obvious, puts forward certain qualities of this new chassis: centre of gravity low and good handling make urban developments. Do nothing to spoil, the Vulcan S works well and can be guessed that the daily will be a formality for her because, finally, it clears very well his weight announced 228 kg all full made in ABS version.
Side comfort, suspension deflections are reduced 130 mm at the front, 80 mm at the rear, but depreciation turns out to be very honest. Surveying the small cobblestones has nothing of torment, only large potholes are drying broadcast.
With its front wheel of 18 inches, the Vulcan S committed slightly in tight corners. She is also a bit sensitive to the curve, with a propensity to recover braking. However, these phenomena are not brutal and it adapts very easily.
The driving, or flying on small well paved road, reveals much more the precision of the chassis, the overall stiffness of the Vulcan. Definitively, the Kawasaki small not squirming in big curve: it holds the road very well, following its path and proves to be very accurate for a custom. On the side of safety, brake shows sufficient, despite a somewhat early trigger on the rear ABS.
Easy for beginners, sparkling for the confirmed
This rolling in the South of the Spain has enabled us to more than 240 kilometres, including a part in total autonomy, guided by GPS. The varied profile of roads allowed us to roll just as different rhythms. And it is without doubt that the Kawasaki Vulcan S scored points.
Easy to understand for a beginner, it provides enough pleasure in quiet use and allows to swallow kilometers without too much fatigue, despite the absence of protection and the deflection reduced suspensions. A good omen for daily use.
And if the roads tournicotent and the heart tells you, the fun resumed duties with the dynamic character of the engine and the part-cycle. Redone roadster DNA so much surface, even if the ground clearance – enough for a cruiser – will require round the corners.
Balance sheet: A midsize custom is atypical
During the webcast, Kawasaki mentioned competition: Harley-Davidson Street 750, Triumph Speedmaster, Honda CTX 700, Suzuki M800 Intruder. Not specially best sellers… and the Vulcan S will be in charge of doing much better in Europe.
Before his test, we only suspected its real potential. At the end of this test, the verdict is much more encouraging. This novelty, designed and built with great seriousness, shows a singular and relevant positioning in the custom niche.
Easy to drive, but sparkling when needed, it is probably one of the most successful motorcycles of the segment. What do reflect a finally wide audience, from the beginner category A2 on the biker confirmed wishing to put the foot in the Stirrup. Sold € 6 899 (€7 299 with ABS) this Kawasaki Vulcan S could make his hole.
Here some beautiful pics of Kawasaki Vulcan S 2015 in gallery bellow.