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Cruiser Blog

2012 Vulcan 900 Custom Project Preview

Monday, July 2, 2012
One testers thought the Vulcan 900 Custom was one of the best looking bikes in the shootout.
The 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom looks the part with its tapered-back, straight bars and matte black scheme, so we're hoping to give it a bit more aggression in the performance department as well with new Vance & Hines pipes, a Force Motor Products high performance intake, a new radiator shroud/chin scoop and front fender from Low and Mean.
Since its stint in the 2012 Women’s Cruiser Shootout, the 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom has landed in our Southern Oregon HQ where we’ve been using it as a daily rider over the last month. It came to us with 785 miles, which we’ve doubled to 1569 total miles. During the 785 miles we’ve logged, the Vulcan 900 Custom has gone through 18.912 gallons of gas at an average of 41.5 mpg.

One of the bike’s best features is its hot rod styling, from its murdered-out paint scheme to its straight bars that taper back to the rider. The tank is nice and wide, as is the padded seat. A tall, skinny 21-inch hoop leads the way and the red race stripe around the 18-spoke flanged wheel is a classy touch. The feel of the front end at the bars is light and the 80mm front tire turns in without much effort. The rider’s triangle is really open thanks to a good stretch to the forward-mounted controls which suits me fine at six-feet-tall but might be a reach for smaller statured riders. And as much as we like the smooth shifting transmission, on the freeway we’d like to see another gear because it gets a bit vibey in the foot pegs at higher rpm in 5th gear.

That being said, we’ve been enjoying our time in the saddle of the 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom. It rides smoothly, handles easily, and looks the part of a drag bike. But we’re looking to give it more attitude so that its performance is more in line with its macho looks.

So to beef up its performance, Vance & Hines is sending over a set of its Twin Slash Staggered Pipes to give it a bigger bark. Force Motor Products is also supporting the cause with its Forcewinder Air Kit, a high performance intake, so the combination of a new pipe and intake should beef up its performance. Our friends over at Low and Mean are also lending a helping hand by sending over a Dagger Cover for the Forcewinder Air Kit, a Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Chin Radiator Shroud and a new front fender with a sportier cut. Chris at Low and Mean is in the process of customizing a Vulcan 900 Custom, too, so we’ll keep you abreast of their project as it materializes. We’d issue Low and Mean a challenge but know too well what they’re capable of after reviewing the V Star 950 they recently customized in-house, so we’ll keep our challenges at the friendly level.

We’re keeping our eyes on the mailbox as we anxiously await the arrival of new products for our 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom project bike. Stay tuned for a full review of the new accessories as well as photos of the project coming in the near future!
Post Tags: Kawasaki Motorcycles, Kawasaki Vulcan, 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom, 2012 Vulcan 900 Custom project bike
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