Vul­can ABS: Check it out

More than you might think comes in this neat 649cc pack­age

Motorcycle Monthly - - Used Bike Guide - Words and pic­tures: Bob Pick­ett

Reg­u­lar read­ers of this col­umn (hello both of you) will be say­ing ‘Hang on, didn’t you test one of these a cou­ple of is­sues back?’ But the op­por­tu­nity to test the stan­dard ABS ver­sion of the Vul­can S came up, along with the chance to ride it for longer than usual.

We were given an­other 2016 Vul­can S, but this time the stan­dard ABS ver­sion (stan­dard levers, monochrome paint job, stan­dard shaped tank), with just 468 miles on the clock (pre-test).

Give me some spec

A high-ten­sile steel dou­ble pipe perime­ter frame houses a 649cc par­al­lel twin putting out 61bhp/45kW @ 7500rpm with max­i­mum torque of 63Nm/6.4kgf-m @ 6600rpm and a 115mph top speed. It weighs 223kg wet, brought to a halt by a sin­gle 300mm, two-pis­ton caliper front disc and 250mm, sin­gle caliper rear.

So what’s it like to ride?

As with the Spe­cial, this bike came with stan­dard bars/peg/seat. The stan­dard peg po­si­tion is raked out (I’d like to ride one with the rearset peg place­ment), but it makes for long ride com­fort. I did a 60 mile non­stop ride with­out a fid­get.

The dealer is lo­cated on an in­dus­trial es­tate, great for get­ting used to the bike be­fore head­ing onto the open road. I used this to reac­quaint my­self with the han­dling and the Vul­can can lean over quite a way, fur­ther than you ex­pect from a cruiser. On the road, lean into the bend, push on the in­side peg and let the Vul­can flow from bend to bend.

Given it was still in it’s run­ning in pe­riod I was care­ful about the revs, but even stick­ing in the bot­tom two-thirds of the range, open­ing the throt­tle to over­take re­warded with suf­fi­cient grunt to have it pulling hard on my arms as I drove for­ward with pur­pose.

I have to praise the sta­bil­ity and poise of the Vul­can. The pho­tos don’t re­veal this, but I rode in con­di­tions from glo­ri­ously sunny to heavy rain caus­ing a flash flood. If you are fa­mil­iar with Chelms­ford you will know Three Mile Hill, a three mile dual car­riage­way and be­ing a hill, fairly steep. The rain ham­mered down hard enough to cause a flood at the bot­tom that washed over my heels as the Vul­can cruised through it (at walk­ing pace) un­af­fected.

Other than that, the brakes have good feel and power, the mir­rors are great and the dash gives more in­for­ma­tion than I know what to do with!

What nick is it in?

A slight scrape on the end of a lever, of the ‘I got too close to the garage wall’ va­ri­ety and a blem­ish on a pil­lion peg, but noth­ing of is­sue.

What’s it worth?

The dealer wants £5299 for a 2016 model with 468 (pre-test) miles logged and fac­tory war­ranty still re­main­ing; a grand off list for a bike not fully run in. This is keenly priced: my dealer search – ig­nor­ing the Cafe and Spe­cial ver­sions (and the ‘one mile’ items) – sourced a 2015 bike with 1860 miles clocked for £4995 up to a 2016 bike for £5599 with 2150 miles recorded.

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