Despite the massive amounts of torque available on the VN2000, the engineers at Kawasaki chose to put some steep gearing in the bike. The net result is that you need to shift out of first gear almost immediately after starting up. Heck, there isn’t even a need for first gear. You can easily start in second. Additionally, this means that at highway speeds, you are often tempted to shift into the non-existent 6th gear because the engine is turning so fast. The gearing on the models sold in Europe however have gearing that is not quite as steep as the ones sold in the US.
So… some folks in the Rogue community have purchased the European gears and installed them on their US bikes. The good news is that this does not involve changing the gears inside the transmission. Instead, this involves swapping out the transfer gears that connect the transmission output shaft to the shaft that drives the front belt pulley. The stock US transfer gears in the transmission have 42 teeth (front) and 50 teeth (rear). The Euro transfer gears have 44 teeth (front) and 48 teeth (rear). This change in gearing creates a noticeable difference. From what I have read in other posts, with the stock configuration, the final drive ratio is 2.7439. and with the euro gears it’s 2.4545. (more…)