2012 Kawasaki MotorcycleFor 2012, Kawasaki returns with the Vulcan 900 Custom and Custom Special Edition, both bikes featuring a full-out factory upgrades on styling.
From the cast 21-inch front wheel and rear 15-inch wheel with 180mm rear tire, the largest in its class, to the flat handlebars and forward footpegs, the 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom has that aggressive style bring motorcyclists back to the early days of customized motorcycles.Powering the Vulcan 900 is a 903cc engine with fuel injection bolted into an chassis that provides smaller-bike agility, although all the big-bike styling is there.For 2012, Kawasaki offers the unique special edition for those seeking additional styling.Kawasaki says: “The Vulcan 900 Custom SE comes with all the trappings of an expensive handmade creation for a fraction of the cost and none of the maintenance headaches. It features a special black-out treatment on the air cleaner, engine cases, and exhaust.“To go along with the special black-out treatment, this year’s Special Edition features solid black wheels. The 2012 Vulcan 900 Custom SE is finished off with a Special Edition Candy Sparking Orange paint scheme with a tribal pinstripe graphic on the tank and rear fender.”Following are the highlights, specs, color options and MSRP for the 2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom.2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom Highlights:Engine
Smooth and reliable engine tuned to deliver a healthy dose of torque at low rpm
Gear-driven balancer allows the use of a single-pin crankshaft without excessive vibration
Rubber mounted to reduce engine vibration at all speeds
Four-Valve Cylinder Head
Provides maximum valve area for optimum flow, creating more power and low-end torque
Single overhead cam design is simple, lightweight and practical
Long intake tracts narrow near the combustion chamber to increase intake flow speed for more efficient filling, increased torque and better low-end response
Liquid and Air Cooling
Finned cylinders and heads combine with liquid cooling for exceptional thermal control
Maintains consistent engine temperatures for long engine life and sustained power
Automatic fan helps keep things cool
Big slash-cut mufflers look great and contain emission reducing honeycomb catalyzers
Positive Neutral Finder
Just lift the shift pedal from first gear at a stop to easily find neutral, every time
Superb performance and rideability thanks to dual throttle bodies with sub-throttles
The ECU-controlled sub-throttles are located behind the main throttle valve, allowing the DFI system to provide more precise throttle response, similar to a constant velocity carburetor
Fine-atomizing fuel injectors produce a fine fuel mist for optimal acceleration, combustion and fuel consumption
Very rigid, large-diameter box section backbone allows space for a larger fuel tank, and offers high stability and lightweight handling at low speeds
Fork offset and frame geometry combine for light, low-effort handling at ultra-low speeds
Long wheelbase contributes to highway stability
Triangular swingarm has a hardtail appearance, but utilizes a single shock hidden beneath the seat
Long and low chassis for minimal seat height, maximum visual impact
Lower unsprung weight than shaft drive to improve ride quality and suspension action
Low maintenance and low noise
41mm Front Fork
Offers excellent rigidity and 5.9 inches of travel
33 degrees of rake and 7.2 inches of trail for excellent straight line stability
A 300mm front and 270mm rear disc are both gripped by twin-piston calipers for some of the best stopping power in the class
21-inch Front Wheel
The wheel’s 18 “spokes” are arranged in pairs
Tapered and flanged in two directions, every line and surface of each 3D spoke is exquisitely curved
180mm rear tire provides added stability while projecting a powerful image
Wider tire than that found on most large-displacement cruisers
Custom cast 15-inch rear wheel contrasts the “light,” tall front wheel
Provides riders crucial information at a glance
Compact design matches the bike’s clean look
Fuel tank features a twin valley design, with a dynamic tension and presence all its own
Designed to be pleasing to both the eye and to the touch, the tank is composed exclusively of curves with constantly varying radii; the twin valley design theme continues to the rear fender and its hand-sculpted contours
Bottom of the rear fender features a relatively straight cut, to balance the lines of the motorcycle
Chromed headlamp, headlamp mount, lower triple clamp and turn signals as well as footpegs, shift lever and rear brake lever
Clean headlight design is compact and isolated without a central fork cover or headlamp bar
Small, minimalist fender and lack of front fork covers also contribute to the slender appearance of the front end
Sporty, straight-style handlebar adds to the bike’s custom styling. Instead of handlebar clamps, twin tubes elegantly curve back from the upper triple clamp. Both the handlebar and twin tubes are completely chromed
Forward-mounted footpegs instead of floorboards add to the custom image and improve rider control
One-piece “gunfighter” style seat is designed for comfortable rider and passenger accommodation and a custom-style look
Matte black frame emphasizes the chrome finishing
Standard toe-operated shift lever instead of a heel-toe shifter complements the forward footpegs for a more open rider position
Black-out treatment on air cleaner, engine cases, handlebar, headlight and rear fender struts
New for 2012, solid black wheels enhance blackout look
2012 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom Specs:
Engine: Four-stroke, liquid-cooled, SOHC, four valves per cylinder V-twin
Displacement: 903cc / 55.1 cu. in.
Bore x Stroke: 88 x 74.2 mm
Maximum Torque: 58.2 lb.-ft. @ 3,500 rpm
Compression Ratio: 9.5:1
Cooling System: Liquid
Fuel System: DFI with dual 34mm Keihin throttle bodies (2)
Ignition: TCBI with Electronic Advance
Final Drive: Belt
Frame: Double cradle, high-tensile steel
Rake/Trail: 33°/7.2 in.
Front Suspension / Wheel Travel: 41mm hydraulic telescopic fork / 5.9 in.
Rear Suspension / Wheel Travel: Uni-Trak swingarm, 7-way adjustable spring preload / 4.1 in.
Zero Electric ADV Bike + Al and Bridget from Throw Your Leg Over
byMotos and Friends by Ultimate Motorcycle
Hello everyone and welcome to Motos and Friends, a weekly Podcast brought to you by the editorial team at Ultimate Motorcycling. My name is Arthur Coldwells.
Electric mobility is everywhere nowadays. Whether it’s a car, a truck, an assisted bicycle, a scooter, or any number of new innovations, the electric revolution is certainly here. In this week’s first segment, Nic de Sena took a ride on Zero’s recently announced new Adventure bike—the Zero DSR-X. There’s been a lot of hype about this new arrival on the ADV scene, and of course the questions are many. Nic talks to me about whether Zero actually have a credible, alternative energy ADV bike—or if the machine is just simply an empty promise.
In our second segment, I chat with Al and Bridget from ‘Throw Your Leg Over’. They took time out to record this episode from somewhere in the middle of Romania, of all places.
These interesting Aussies have traveled—and painstakingly documented—the thousands of miles they’ve covered riding the best roads and sights through Australia, Tasmania, Europe, eastern Europe, and Scandinavia, among other places.