You’ve probably heard of the Ford-150, but how about the Ford Lobo? What about the Opel Karl or the Holden Commodore? These are actually just different names for common car models in the U.S. The Ford Lobo is popular in Mexico, where the Opel Karl is the U.K’s version of the Chevrolet Spark, and the Holden Commodore is Australia’s Chevy SS.
So, why do car models have different names in different countries? A lot of it has to do with appealing to the car trends and fashions unique to each location. For example, the most popular cars in Europe and Asia tend to be more compact, since the streets are small and crowded. The Dodge brand is known for hefty suburbans, so when bringing their Dart model to China, Dodge rebranded the model as the Fiat Viaggio to bring to mind visions of zippy, compact Italian cars.
Vehicles also get new names in new locations because some car model names can translate strangely from English. An example of this is the Chevy Nova. In Spanish, “no va” directly translates to “doesn’t go,” which is obviously not a ringing endorsement of the car Chevy was hoping to sell in Spanish-speaking countries. Many more embarrassing instances of these mis-translations have occurred over the years as well.
Without further ado, take a look at some of the most popular cars around the world today, and what they are known as in different countries.
The next time you’re traveling abroad, keep an eye out for some of these unique car model names! You might be surprised by how many you recognize, and you’ll have a better idea of which model you’ll want to rent.