The Kawasaki 500 Vulcan is a great little motorcycle. It is used both by beginners and by more experienced riders. I put thousands of miles on my first Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD. It always started and handled anything I asked it to do. I rode it in snow, rain, mud and in many days of beautiful sunshine.
The Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD is considered to be a small cruiser. Many people try to say that more power is needed, but I put 24,000 miles on mine in about 6 months and didn’t really find that to be true if I didn’t exceed the recommended weight limits.
The Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD is a motorcycle that you can just get on and ride away upon. I found the seat low enough at 28″ and wide enough to be comfortable enough to use for three or four hours at a time without any problem. The handlebars were a comfortable reach. Everything worked well. For such a small bike, I was amazed at how durable it was. Absolutely amazed.
Looks wise, this motorcycle seems to be a love it or hate it kind of a bike. I bought my first one for next to nothing because the guy hated the way it looked. Personally, I like the relatively long length, which makes it a lot of fun on open roads. The long wheelbase does make turning tight circles a bit rough.
It can be hard to find aftermarket parts for the Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD. There are parts available now that were unavailable before, but they may be available through other vulcan 500 owners who have had parts fabricated by welders. These owners may go visit their welder for you and the ship you the parts. This is especially true for the engine crash guards. The forum members are of great help.
Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD owners have had trouble getting good quality parts as this market seems to have been overlooked by quality fabricators who felt the market was too small. Some Kawasaki Vulcan 800 parts will work out fine, while others won’t.
Soft Bags are available; but make sure to get good supports to go beneath and under the bags, or they sag into the mufflers. There is a trunk that many have gotten that is also being used as a backrest for the passenger. On the forums there is some information about a backrest for a driver, but not a lot. Few have them.
Corbin (a well-known motorcycle seat fabricator) can make a better seat, but you will need to take or send your old seat into Corbin. What Corbin does is take the bottom of your old seat (called a seat pan), rip off the old cover and foam; then remakes the seat with better materials. This makes the motorcycle much more comfortable to ride; especially for long distances.
The engine in a Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD is the same engine as is in the Kawasaki Ninja 500, but is tuned differently to help adapt it to cruising. The end result is a peppy motorcycle that is awesome to ride. It can beat many other bikes in a straight drag off the lights, up to a speed of 60 or so.
This bike is peppy, fun and pretty easy to work on.
It can be hard to find parts for, the battery can be a tough reach.
Forums are available at KawasakiMotorcycle and at Vulcanforums.