Sharing its liquid-cooled, 1,700c, 52-degree, V-twin powerplant with Kawasaki’s flagship Voyager tourer, the Vulcan 1700 Vaquero amps up the attitude with traditional bagger styling features. Key elements include a streamlined frame-mounted fairing with a cut-down tinted windshield, abbreviated seating, sleeker hard side cases, and predictably, sinister black finishes throughout. Kawasaki markets the Vaquero as a “bagger cruiser,” but, in reality, you could certainly tour far and wide on this big unit.
Touring-oriented features include electronic cruise control, 16-inch wheels with fat radial tires (130/90 front and 170/90 rear), an iPod- and SiriusXM radio-compatible AM/FM audio system with separate weather band, 10 gallons of storage apiece in the side cases, and a reasonably sized (though by no means gigantic) 5.3-gallon fuel tank. Antilock brakes are standard, as is brake-force distribution (a common automotive feature) that optimizes front/rear hydraulic pressure, which comes in handy when you’re braking hard on this 845-pound bruiser. Happily, the standard limited warranty extends for three years.
Likes: Factory accessories include multiple touring windshield and seat options
Dislikes: Brighter and safer LED headlight(s) please!
Verdict: Cruise with attitude across town or cross-country