How famous cars got their namesJuly 3, 2019
In any car company there is a whole department whose main task is to invent names for new models. If the car will be associated with an unsuccessful predecessor, or its name will sound in a foreign language vulgar or obscene, sales are unlikely to be high. For this reason, for example, in our market, the Hyundai Accent model is sold under the name Solaris, so that buyers do not have a connection with an outdated model, Volkswagen decided to remove the Passat CC from the market and release Arteon instead, and the Soviet “Lada” already exported from 1975 name Lada, because the original name was too consonant with the word “Gigolo”, which is not the most positive color.
The Porsche 911 debuted in Frankfurt in 1963 as number 901. The legendary model caused excitement for everyone, except for Peugeot – the French demanded to give the model a different name, saying that only they had the right to give cars three-digit names with zero in the middle. As we know, neither Peugeot 901 nor the rear-engined sports car ever got off the production lines of Peugeot, but they were not going to allow a competitor to violate copyrights. Porsche had no choice but to replace the zero by one.
But Renault, on the contrary, in the early nineties decided to end the era of digital names and by 1993 presented the world to the Twingo model. In the name of a small base model, the French automaker combined three dance styles: twist, swing and tango.
The Chevrolet Camaro is not such an interesting story – during the launch of the model, the names of almost all other cars of the brand began with the letter “C”, so the Chevrolet creators made a list of two thousand words starting with this letter, and the management chose the best option. However, during the presentation of the model, representatives of the brand said that camaro is a predatory animal that feeds on mustangs. Well, you know what mustangs are talking about.
Tesla S, X, 3 and Y
The “Tesla” situation with the names is much more interesting. The company called the first electric car just a roadster, but then decided to use letters. First, the model S was introduced to the public, then models X and 3 debuted, the Model Y crossover was opened last. If you put these letters side by side, it turns out SX3Y. Sounds like something devoid of meaning, but only until you know that the Model 3 actually had to become Model E, and only Mercedes-Benz’s claims prevented this. Now put the letter “E” instead of “3” and rearrange the letters a little. True, it turns out “SEXY”.
The MX-5, the international name of one of the nicest roadsters in history, the Mazda Miata, stands for the fifth Mazda pilot project. But the name Miata comes from the old German “reward”. At the same time, Miata rewards both its owners, giving them an unforgettable driving experience, and Japanese brand engineers, who have long and hard worked on the roadster project.
Dodge SRT Hellcat
Dodge uses the abbreviation SRT to refer to the “charged” versions of its cars, in particular, on the Hellcat Charger and Challenger versions. The SRT letters, which have already become an independent brand, are decoded as “Road and Racing Technologies” (Street and Racing Technology). And the name “hellish cat”, by the way, was borrowed by the American manufacturer from the Grumman F6F Hellcat fighter from the Second World War.
Hatchback received a name in honor of Haris, a symbol of beauty and grace in ancient Greek mythology. But the Japanese decided to modify the name a bit and put “Ya” in the first syllable, which means “Yes” in German.
Initially, Volkswagen could not boast of creativity in the names – for example, the official name of the “Beetle” was just Volkswagen Type 1. Then the company changed the vector to water-cooled front-wheel-drive cars, and decided to be inspired by the winds to select names. This is how the Golf (Gulf Stream), Passat (in honor of the winds-trade winds), Jetta (jet stream of the wind) and Scirocco – the Mediterranean sultry wind. It is curious, by the way, that the latter shares its name with Maserati: the term Ghibli is also used to refer to the sirocco winds.
Qashqai, perhaps, can be safely attributed to cars, the names of which raise the most questions. The answer to what “Qashqai” means is to be found in a textbook on anthropology – the so-called Turkic migrants who inhabit the Zagros Mountains in Iran. Why the Japanese decided to call their crossover that way, forever remain a mystery, but it is likely that the answer will be something like “it just sounds cool.”
Sport Coupe got its name in honor of the annual Tourist Trophy motorcycle race. No, you are not mistaken, Audi really never produced serial bikes, and certainly did not participate in this race. The fact is that the company DKW, part of Audi, was engaged in the production of motorcycles, and in 1938 even won the TT race.
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