What’s the Worst Name for a Motorcycle? – Question of the Day

Dennis Chung
by Dennis Chung

From goofy to downright awful

A little while ago, I wrote about my admiration for the Gladius, but conceded that its name didn’t really connect with people the way Suzuki probably wanted it to. If you knew that a gladius was a type of sword used by ancient Roman soldiers, you could see how it might make sense for a company that also gave us the Katana. If you didn’t, then it just sounded too much like “Gladys”, and the only vehicle that name would make sense for, is a midnight train to Georgia.

Naturally, this got me thinking about other poorly named motorcycles. Everyone knows the joke about the Honda DN-01 standing for “Do Not Own 1”, and whoever thought of Deauville should never be allowed to name their own children.

The Honda Deauville NT700V in the only color appropriate for the name: gray.

BMW typically plays it safe, giving most of its bikes a combination of letters and numbers for their names. Sure, it may come across as a bit robotic, but once you’re familiar with the nomenclature, you can easily identify the engine type, displacement, and motorcycle category. When it strays from this path with names like the R 18 Roctane, or the confusing R 12 nineT, you can see why BMW may be better off sticking to a simple alphanumeric name.

But even that formula can be a bit cumbersome. Suzuki’s GSX-S1000GX+ is a tongue-twister, and that’s before you realize the name’s got both a plus and a minus sign in it. Speaking of which, the trend of having a plus sign be part of the name (see Ducati Monster+ and Yamaha Tracer 9 GT+) really does need to go away.

These are just some examples, and I’m sure others can think of some more poorly named motorcycles. So, for our Question of the Day, I ask: what’s the worst name for a motorcycle?

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Dennis Chung
Dennis Chung

Dennis has been a part of the Motorcycle.com team since 2008, and through his tenure, has developed a firm grasp of industry trends, and a solid sense of what's to come. A bloodhound when it comes to tracking information on new motorcycles, if there's a new model on the horizon, you'll probably hear about it from him first.

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