Do you name your motorbikes?

Triumph Bonneville T100 bike name

Do you have a name for your motorbike or refer to it as a male or female?

You are not alone!

I’ve never named a bike, probably because I’ve never held on to them for anything more than a couple of years.

Had I named any of my bikes, I might not have been so fickle and sold them so quickly.

Well, that’s not entirely true, I did have a Suzuki SDV650 for a while that was referred to as “Suzi” and my 2010 Triumph Bonneville T100 is “the Bonnie”.

However, those are simply abbreviations for convenience, not affectionate names.

My wife sometimes refers to the Honda CX500 project bike as “Rhonda the Honda”, but I never used that term, either.

Honda CX500
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Male and female bikes

However, many riders name their bikes with a male or female moniker.

I’m not sure how they decide whether a bike is a male or female.

Anatomically, they seem to have parts resembling both genders.

You might think men prefer to ride bikes with “female bikes” and women like to ride “male bikes”, but I’ve also heard of males riding bikes with male names and females riding bikes with feminine names.

And for reasons of sexism or stereotyping, I won’t go into why one gender is more appropriate over the other for a bike that is muscular, or cantankerous, or unreliable, or fast, or “sexy”.

Women female nameNaming advice

I found a great word of advice about naming your bike from HappyWrench.com.

They say that, like a tattoo, “don’t name the bike after a girlfriend, ex-girlfriend, boyfriend, or ex-girlfriend”.  

“Avoid something contentious or that could potentially become contentious,” they claim, and it’s sound advice!

Colours are fairly common nicknames for motorbikes: Red Devil, Blue Terror, Yellow Peril, Black Beauty, Mighty Whitey, Green Machine and Cherry Bud.

And brand abbreviations or derivations are also common: Beemer, Bonnie, Duc, Hog, Kato, Kwaka, Suzi, Trumpy and Yammie.

  • Do you name your bike? Tell us how you choose it and how you decided on its sex? Please send us photos of your titled motorbike.

18 Comments

  1. Hey, it is Chris from HappyWrench. Sorry for being so late to the party and only finding this shout-out now! I want to say thanks. That particular post on my site was one of my favorites. My Shovelhead “Cal” is like a dear friend at this point and when I named him, it just felt right. Anyways, stay in touch. I will be back!

  2. My single cylinder 4-stoke Suzuki’s have all been named “Mudguts” I II III IV V VI after a Mad Max character.
    My black BMW R80 was; “Black Betty” (bam-ba-lam) after the obvious record.
    The GSX 1400 was “Sleipnir” after Odin’s powerful eight legged horse.
    My current ride is “Alsvinn”, meaning ‘The Speedy.’ (Alsvinn was one of the two Norse mythological horses that pulled the chariot containing the sun around the world every day.) I was able to get a plaque engraved with the name in Runic script put on the back of the bike and it’s a head scratcher/ conversation starter.

  3. yep on naming,it just happens I guess,…I did a deal with a mate in Wauchope Doctor Dan) that kept his bike so shiny it was called ‘the tart’,..i live in the bush,so then it had to have a country and western name,..so we called her the ‘dusty tart’ !!?? 🙂

  4. My Harley is called ‘Taylor’ – because it’s swift and it’s the only way I’ll ever ride …. you get the idea 🙂

  5. ‘Max’ is a C650 Sport BeeEmm scoot and ‘Paul’ a 1150GS … Why? well, obviously too much time doing long cruises and with no music other stuff pops into mind, so these popped and stuck. Helps to have ‘conversations’ on a previous 25.000 km ride on the GS and my forthcoming 7000 km ride on the scoot

  6. My Tiger XRT is Shere Khan – I guess I liked the Mowgli tales when I was a kid – it’s definitely male. Previous bike was Bonnie (female) and the one prior to that was “The Bull” a Royal Enfield, of course!

  7. I have a V-Star XVS 1100 Custom that had the rego “110MC”. Naturally, I named him “Hammer” after the rapper, MC Hammer. I have since moved interstate and obtained personalised plates which carry on the MC Hammer theme. Hammer suits him perfectly.

  8. I call my Moto Guzzi Breva 1100 ‘Utzi the Guzzi’ because a previous owner took it into the Italian Alps. Thankfully, unlike its namesake it made it back down again.

  9. All my bikes are female since I don’t want to ride a man.
    My first bike, a GS500, was named Slappy, for it was a slapper.
    Second bike, 08 Street Triple, is named Ange, after Angelina Jolie who rode the same bike in Salt.
    Third bike, Ducati 1098, is named Daisy – Daisy Duc.
    Fourth bike, BMW Sertão, is named Sabrina, a Portuguese name like the Brazillian desert the bike was named for.

  10. A friend of mine named his Harley “Brutus” (and when he sold it the buyer was going to keep the name).

    My bike doesn’t have a name but I sometimes refer to it as “my fat bottomed girl”.

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