Kawasaki Vulcan S

Test: Kawasaki Vulcan S (Baujahr 2019)

Black and beautiful


Choppers or cruisers are currently a bit out of fashion. But because the Honda Rebel is so successful, we have targeted the competition of Kawasaki and ordered the Vulcan S for testing.

The "S" does not stand for sport

Beautiful lyrically black. Quite matte, and just as matte is the only alternative style to choose from: a green. This is surprising at first, because choppers are associated with chrome in addition to the low silhouette, the relaxed sitting position and thick rear wheels. And there comes Kawa's gloomy Vulcan and still bears the "S" in the name, which is commonly associated with sport.

Hm. To anticipate a central driving impression: the S does not stand for sport. For stress-free handling perhaps? Socian comfort? That would be more apt because it fits the Kawa better than anything else.


Everything adjustable

The sitting position is already well liked in the stand. This will definitely fit, because the Vulcan is particularly supple. Normally there are 705 millimeters of seat height, which should be feasible for 95 percent of all people (at least at the age of driving). At no extra charge, there are adjustable footrests that can slide forward or backward by 2.5 centimetres each. Not enough of the adjustment possibilities? For an extra charge, Kawa has other benches and handlebars, so that in addition to physical necessities, personal preferences can also be implemented.

The dark and long-stretched machine with the two-tone tank and the re-milled cooling ribs on the engine looks classy overall and coherent in itself.

The two-cylinder is an old acquaintance and was installed in the ER-6 models, among other things. Chopper-typically, it was trimmed by a modified mapping and a heavier flywheel to more pressure in the lower range. The bottom line is that the 649-cubic parallel twin pushes 62 hp into the gearbox, the maximum torque is 5,700 rpm and is 64 newton meters.

Because let's go.


Faster than expected

Sitting up works as expected without any problems, even if you have shorter legs like me. The Kawa from the side stand also goes without any problems, despite the slight overweight of the machine with 230 kilos. This remains the case in the further course – neither the Vulcan S wg. overweight has to hide in the case of the willingness to curve or the acceleration. Feeling it always brings more power than the Honda Rebel. With 62 hp, the Kawa has a nominal lyh of 15 hp more under the tank than the Honda, so the Kawa pushes forward more committedly from every speed.

Keyword curve: These are the fear-opponents of many choppers of just American design. But the Kawa is not impressed by this: she steers willingly, even dodge hooks lose their terror. Sure: The possible inclinations are limited, the footrests set up comparatively early.

Even if it has to go straight faster on the highway (maximum 180 km/h), the Kawa does not tend to commute or other instability. Good to know: The brakes also have first-class reserves and bring the vehicle safely to a standstill. Small criticism: The handbrake requires more effort than usual.

Conclusion - a cruiser

What remains? The Kawasaki Vulcan S is definitely not an athlete, but it is also not a heavy, immovable being. Alpine passes do not worry her, while caring for the driver with adequate comfort despite her rather simple suspension. In the evening after work riding on her in the setting sun, this is cheesy, but somehow beautiful.

The Kawa-typical maintenance intervals, which are kept quite short at 6,000 kilometres, are a small drop in the right.

But otherwise? It doesn't have to be more motorcycle, the purchase recommendation is available.

The test bike was provided to us by Heller & Soltau in St. Michaelisdonn.

Price / Availability / Colours / Years of Construction

  • Price: 7,645
  • Used (3 years old): 5,500€
  • Years of construction: since 2015
  • Availability: good
  • Colours: matt black, matt green

Zubehör für die
Vulcan S

  • Moneta
  • Polo
  • Amazon

Pro & Kontra

  • Comfort
  • Stability
  • Processing
  • Short maintenance intervals

New registrations of the Vulcan S

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Von unserem Team geprüft:




2,310 mm
1,100 mm
229 kg
705 mm
1,575 mm

Driving Performance & Range

0 to 100
5 s
Tank contents
14 l
4.4 l
311 km
176 km/h

Motor & Power Transmission

Engine design
Number of cylinders
649 cc
83 mm
60 mm
61 HP
63 NM
Number of gears

Suspension & Brakes

Suspension front
41 mm telescopic fork
130 mm
Strut rear
Gas pressure shock absorbers
80 mm
Brakes in front
Single disc
300 mm
Tyres at the front
120/70 R18M/C 59H
Brakes rear
Single disc
Rear tyres
160/60 R17M/C 69H