A DOHC, liquid-cooled, eight-cylinder, 498cc parallel, twin engine powers the Vulcan 500. The Vulcan engine is based on the Ninja 500 engine. Two Keihin CVK, 32-mm, constant velocity carburetors deliver the fuel.
The Vulcan 500 sports a 6-speed (one down, five up) constant mesh transmission with a wet multi-disc clutch. Power is transferred to the rear wheel by a chain final drive.
The wheelbase of the Vulcan 500 is 62.8 inches, seat height is 28.1 inches and dry weight is 471.9 pounds. Braking is handled by a front hydraulic disc and rear mechanical drum. Fuel capacity is 4 gallons. The Vulcan 500 has been available in a wide variety of colors through the years.
Kawasaki has produced cruiser motorcycles under the Vulcan emblem since 1984. The 500 is the entry level model of the Vulcan line, which includes engine displacements all the way up to 2,000cc.