Crazy car model names

Discussion in 'Just Talk' started by quasar9, Jun 24, 2022.

  1. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    What was Toyota thinking of when naming its new car bZ4X, a combination of upper and lower case letter and a number. Perhaps a few special character would have made this password even stronger :D

    many makers like Peugeot, BMW and to a degree Mercedes Benz have kept to a numeric code to solve the issue of model names being mispronounced in a foreign language and hence unintended consequence. The two most famous are Vauxhall nova (no go in Spanish ?) and Toyota MR2, which when spoken by a French speaker sound remarkably similar to sh**t!

    Austin came up with the famous Allegro soon rechristened to All Aggro.

    But some of the most ridiculous names are from Japan ranging from Nissan Fairlady, Daihatsu Naked, Honda Vamios Hobio Pro, Mitsubishi Super Great, Nissan Big Thumb (last two are trucks) and Toyota Tank (which was an MPV despite its name, but guess it’s a fair use of name as Toyotas are generally very reliable). But I guess the price goes to Nissan Leopard J.Ferie Type X!
     
  2. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    Knowing little about vehicles but the one that always evokes a grin is the Mitsubishi Pajero, I always wonder how many owners researched the literal meaning before buying it to ride around in, announcing to the world that they are a wanka (sic).
     
    quasar9, gadget man and Johnik like this.
  3. Bazza-spark

    Bazza-spark Screwfix Select

    Its a literal translation of the Japanese hyroglyphics for "wheels fall off" :eek:
     
  4. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    You mean ideograms, but is it Kanji or Katakana ;)
     
    Bazza-spark likes this.
  5. BiancoTheGiraffe

    BiancoTheGiraffe Screwfix Select

    BMW used to be nice and simple... A 320 was a 3 series with a 2 litre engine... Then they started messing about and it no longer made any sense!

    Thanks for the reminder of the French MR2 cock up, I'd forgotten about that one! :D
     
  6. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select


    Not the first time Mitsubishi has got it wrong .

    Mitsubishi had realised their error as Pajeros were re badged as Shoguns here and Montero in Spanish speaking countries.

    Remember their sports car, Starion ? people in English speaking countries often wondered if they meant Stallion but the badge maker got confused because the Japanese written language does not distinguish between L and R (both use the same letter in Japanese) To confuse things further, Mitsubishi came up with a story that said Starion was correct all along , as this was a contraction of Star of Orion ! Guess they admitted defeat as they rebadged it as the “Conquest” for North America but strangely continued as Starion in UK.

    But like many things, the Chinese are following the Japanese !


    • Great Wall Coolbear
    • Chery Skin.
    • Zhongxing Urban Ark.
    • Hongqi HQE.
    • Tang Hua Detroit Fish.
    • SouEast V5.
    • Joylong Superlong. A copy of a Toyota mini van ( a stretched version of their A6 model)
    • Gonow Alter.
     
  7. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    S S Cars Limited

    On 23 March 1945 the shareholders in general meeting agreed to change the company's name to Jaguar Cars Limited. Said Chairman William Lyons "Unlike S.S. the name Jaguar is distinctive and cannot be connected or confused with any similar foreign name."
     
  8. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    I doubt any car manufacturer would use the model name Midget now (MG).
     
  9. Rosso

    Rosso Active Member

    The Ford sports coupe of a few years ago sold well in the US, and pretty well in europe, but sales were fairly dismal in the UK. It is thought that in the US, the word 'probe' suggests space travel and similar, whereas here, a probe is something the doctor shoves up yer bum.
     
  10. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    Then Ford replaced the Probe with the Cougar, often driven by cougars.
     
    quasar9 likes this.
  11. Tony Goddard

    Tony Goddard Screwfix Select

    The Allegro has a bit of a sad back story, which was outlined on one of James Mays shows - It was designed by a chap called Harry Mann and his original design was quite nice, it was supposed to be the saviour of BL, but then Engineering got their mits on it and started to work out how they could muck about with the design to use as many stock parts from other models as possible - the result a total pile of...
     
  12. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    You could say that’s the story of BL and even UK as a whole. Finest engineering minds shackled by accountants and disheartened by political interference.

    Even the mini, which sold very well, had issues. It was to have a new engine and gearbox but as usual, there was no money and production had to be rushed out with little time for proper testing. As a result it ends up with an A series engine, first put in production in 1951 with Austin A30. Which means in reality this technology was closer to 1946!

    After WW2, UK was brimming with innovation a a result of the war effort as was America. Only our lot were not allowed to exploit these for civilian use while USA had fewer restrictions. Take a classic, the microwave magnetron tube, invented in Britain but the first microwave ovens came out in America but soon made better and cheaper by Japan.

    I could go on, like work done by likes of Turing during WW2 which could have made UK a world leader in computing but the crown was seized by IBM leaving ICL as an also ran !

    Britain came up with the APT, but again rushed out before development was complete. Result, bad publicity. Worse FIAT comes up with the pendolino which we buy. To give the Italians the credit due, they were working on tilting trains since the 1930’s and they have always been even more cash strapped !
     
  13. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    There was a time when the brand Standard implied quality.

    But by the 50s it didn’t sound right and the Standard Motor Company Limited rebranded itself and it’s cars as Triumph.
     
  14. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    Ford stopped using the Escort model name in Europe and the US about 20 years ago but apparently have now started using it in China.

    Interestingly the Escort was originally a variation of the Squire, whatever that means.
     
  15. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    In the 60's there was the Ford Pubic, a concept car made up of parts from old Corsairs.
     
    malkie129 and robertpstubbs like this.
  16. quasar9

    quasar9 Screwfix Select

    Escort has its meaning somewhat tarnished over years as its a name used by other trades.

    But squire !, there is a classic salutation reflecting the centuries old British class system ! Originally, a flag bearer for the knight, who also assisted in getting the armour on and off and pushing the knight up on to his saddle ! Later a term of respect, lesser that titles such as his lordship or even Sir but guess better than something Blackadder might call Baldrick
     
  17. Ad_g

    Ad_g Member

    Ford had a similar issue when they first released the Ka, they decided to use their normal letters for model versions.

    One colleague got some stick when he arrived in his new Si model Ka, took him a few seconds to realise when he saw the Kasi label on the back! Ford quickly realised and switched to numbers.
     
  18. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    There was a company based in Coventry that made Climax engines. Don’t think they’ve lasted.
     
  19. Hans_25

    Hans_25 Screwfix Select

    Shame Mazda didn't name the RX7 to reflect the unique design of its rotary Wankel engine.
     
    Astramax likes this.
  20. Hans_25

    Hans_25 Screwfix Select

    I heard the company grew far too fast and early, blowing its profits.
     

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