ignations; and, the story goes, since the first letter of Cub is a "C," those bikes were simply called CI00, CA100, CI02 and so on. C then became the first-letter designation for most Honda streetbikes, including the original CB72/77 Hawk/ Super Hawk, the CL72/77 250/305 Scrambler, the CB/CL350, the CB750 Four, the CX500/650 transverse V-Twins and even today with the CBR1000RR and CBR600RR. There have been exceptions—such as the S90 and S65 Singles of the 1960s, the SL "Moto-sport" series, the VFR V-Fours, the GL Gold Wing flat-Sixes, the VT/VTX V-Twin cruisers, etc.—as well as a few other inconsistencies in the naming protocol. But otherwise, "CB" has remained the first two call letters for the company's inline-Four and vertical-Twin street models.

Numerous motorcycles over the past half-century have had "Z," "Y" and "X" in their names (the Suzuki X-6 and Yamaha YDS3 of the 1960s, for example; the Kawasaki Z-l and Yamaha XS series of the '70s), so it's difficult to pinpoint exactly when the "cool" model designations you refer to came into vogue. Kawasaki may have gotten the ball rolling with its GPz series of the early 1980s, but with the landmark GSX-R750 in 1985, Suzuki shifted the trend into high gear. Lots of X-Y-Z model names soon became prominent— Kawasaki with ZX, ZRX and ZX-R, Yamaha with YZF600R, YZF-R1/R6 and FZ1/FZ6, and Suzuki even adding GSX (minus the -R) nomenclature to a few non-repli-racer models.

Whether or not any of these names are cooler than others is purely a matter of opinion. Besides, the motorcycle is what provides the real joy, not its name. □

Got a mechanical or technical problem and can't find workable solutions in your area? Or are you eager to learn about a certain aspect of motorcycle design and technology? Maybe we can help. If you think we can, either: 1) Mail a written inquiry, along with your full name, address and phone number, to Cycle World Service, 1499 Monrovia Ave., Newport Beach, CA 92663; 2) fax it to Paul Dean at 949/6310651; 3) e-mail it to CWIDean @aol.com\ or 4) log onto www.cycleworld.com, click on the "Contact Us" button, select "CW Service" and enter your question. Don't write a 10-page essay, but if you're looking for help in solving a problem, do provide enough information to permit a reasonable diagnosis. Include your name if you submit the question electronically. And please understand that due to the enormous volume of inquiries we receive, we cannot guarantee a reply to every question.

No new bike this year? So get to your dealer and improve what you've got. Our S100® "stimulus package" is just the thing.

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Market-leading bike care products that have been around for over 25 years ... even supplied to bike manufacturers themselves. (Some of our customers tell us they fooled their friends into thinking their bike was new!) So invest for the future by adding value to your ride with S100 Cycle Care products.

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