Although the Nomad brought a few innovations to the engine bay (such as a relocated oil-level sight glass) when it was introduced, most of them have now been adapted to the Classic. However, the heavier Nomad gets slightly more flywheel mass. Essentially, it is the same liquid-cooled, single-carb, single-overhead-cam, eight-valve 50-degree V-twin that we first saw in the Vulcan 1500 Classic in 1996. That machine was derived from the Vulcan 1500 A model. Deep finning gives the Classic's engine a traditional air-cooled appearance, unlike the A model which looks liquid-cooled. A gear-driven counterbalancer takes the vibration out of the engine at highway speeds and reduces it to a gentle throb at low engine speeds. A large airbox runs through the V and uses round chrome covers on both sides of the engine. These days, all the bikes based on the Vulcan 1500 Classic—which for 1999 includes the ultra-retro Drifter—have five speeds. Shaft-drive sends power to the rear wheel.