Melding classic cruiser feel with sharp, fighter-jet looks, the 2011 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero ($16,500) looks like a fine summertime ride. Powered by a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected 1,700cc V-twin engine, it's got plenty of oomph to get you around, and also boasts a six-speed transmission, a fully electronic throttle actuation system, a steel frame, air-adjustable shocks, 9-spoke cast aluminum wheels, a LED taillight, cruise control, and killer custom-style bodywork that will draw just as much attention as its rumbling exhaust note.
Just getting started in the motorcycle scene? As tempting as they might be, you — and your brains, bones, and organs — are better off skipping the superbike scene and hopping aboard something a little more tame, like the Suzuki TU250X Motorcycle ($4,000). Sporting a stylish retro design, the TU250X features a 249cc four-stroke SOHC engine, a five-speed transmission, a diamond-shaped steel tube frame, front disc and rear drum brakes, and a low 30.3-inch seat height that's great for beginners.