The S40 is the far superior motorcycle. The VLX is only an “around town” bike because the fact that it only has a 4 speed transmission combined with its anemic power prevents it from being able to get up to highway speeds a real struggle. Most motorcycles have at least a 5 speed transmission which helps them safely and (relatively) easily get up to highway speeds regardless of how weak or powerful their engines are, but the VLX doesn’t have this, and as a result even 250s can pass it on the highway.
Also, there’s a reason that the VLX was discontinued two years ago while the S40 is still being made. The VLX has always been a slow seller for Honda because price-wise it couldnt compete with the performance of the Kawasaki Vulcan 500 or (when it was being produced), the Yamaha Virago 535 (which was replaced by the V-Star 650).
In short: If you want a sub-750cc cruiser, your ONLY options you should be considering are the S40, Kawsaki Vulcan 500, Yamaha V-Star 650, and the various 250s on the market.