Is your motorcycle male or female?

Pink Hello Kitty Ducati Scrambler revenue male

Many riders name their bikes, some of them giving them a male or female name, but psychologists say the “sex” of your bike depends on the rider.

When motorcycles ascribe gender model names they are male: Fat Boy, Fat Bob, Chieftain, Scout, etc.

2018 Harley-Davidson Fat Bob male
Fat Bob is deinitely male

We couldn’t find any female model motorcycle names, although there are a few female scooter names such as the Vespa Stella.

Yet many riders refer to their bike with female pronouns – she, her – and even give them female names.

That’s not always true as we found when we published an article about naming your bike.

Male and female riders name their bikes with both male and female names.

However, the dominant gender of motorcycles seems to be female.

There are several theories on why this happens.

Sailing

It could go back to the convention of sailors to refer to their ships as female and bestow female names. In ancient times they were named after goddesses who would protect them on their voyages. Most boats, trains and other vehicles are still given female names today.

Language

Another theory suggests that it stems from languages such as French and German that give nouns gender. For example, “the motorcycle” is “la moto” in French and “la motocicleta” in Spanish where “la” bestows the feminine gender.

However, in Russian motorcycle (mototski) is masculine.

Ural forest camo male
Could a Russian Ural be anything other than male?

Slang

Another linguistic theory revolves around slang terms such as “she’s a beauty”, “she’s hot”, or “she really goes”.

If it’s a problematic bike it’s a “bitch” or a “whore”.

If it’s gorgeous, it’s a “babe”.

And if it will let anyone ride it, it’s a “skank”, “tramp” or a “tart”!

Gender stereotypes

TV bike cop Danny John-Jules stars in motorcycle show male
Pink is not necessarily feminine

At the risk of upsetting women and the LGBTQI community, there are theories that concern gender and sexual orientation stereotypes.

Some suggest that temperamental or unreliable machines are displaying female characteristics.

Since 90% of riders are male, there is also the relevance of developing a relationship with their bike as their “significant other”.

Heterosexual men may feel their masculinity is threatened by enjoying a ride on a male bike and would prefer throwing their leg over a female bike.

  • What sex is your motorbike? have some fun and leave your comments below.

14 Comments

  1. As well as the Honda Valkyrie noted above, there is the Yamaha Virago. I know that word, because I have met one or two viragoes in my time…

  2. My Bonneville is obviously female. Being female myself, she is a good friend, always cheers me up, never tries to fix anything, is a good listener and never judges.
    Of course she’s a Bonnie so she must be female!

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