You'll need a sense of humor for this one.
We’ve talked a lot about car names; their origins and how important they are to brand enthusiasts. But what’s often overlooked is how a car name translates into different languages. If nothing else, it would take forever to do, plus who cares what Toyota Supra sounds like in Polish? That said, perhaps this is why we’ve seen an increase in alphanumeric car names – you can’t piss off people with a random collection of single letters and digits, after all! There could be more, but here are the eleven most offensive car names ever conceived.
Ascari KZR-1 British carmaker Ascari – named after the first double F1 champion Alberto Ascari – built the KZR-1 for use in the American Le Mans Series in 2002. Only two were built, which is probably a good thing as in Germany using ‘KZ’ is a massive no-no given its an acronym for Konzentrationslager, the German word for concentration camps.
Dodge Kahuna Dodge was guilty of making a major faux pax when releasing the Kahuna at the 2003 Detroit Motor Show. While the minivan concept designed with surfers in mind never made it to production, hundreds of Hawaiians signed a petition for Dodge to rename the car, accusing it of being sacrilegious as Kahuna is the word used for “priest.”
Mazda Laputa Designed as an economic runaround for urban dwellers, the good people at Mazda didn’t seem bothered that Laputa is Spanish for ‘The Whore.’ No doubt there are people reading this who have called their car something far worse.
Mitsubishi Pajero Again, we have a case of a Japanese carmaker ostracizing its Spanish clientele. To a Spaniard, the Mitsubishi Pajero reads as: The Mitsubishi who masturbates frequently. We’ll leave you to ponder that one for a few minutes.
Daihatsu Scat If you’re unsure why the oldest Japanese carmaker should have thought twice about naming its little offroader, you might want to Google its urban dictionary definition. You have been warned.
Mitsubishi Evo Zero Fighter Zero was a WWII fighter plane that killed thousands of allies across the Pacific and was used in Kamikaze raids at the end of the war, something Mitsubishi chose to ignore when naming its Evo Zero Fighter.
Isuzu GIGA Light Dump When you name a truck after what a sumo wrestler will do after a sizable dinner, then you’re asking for trouble. Mazda should be equally named and shamed here for its Titan Dump.
Honda Fit If you don’t know why Honda renamed its Fit city car as the Jazz in Norway (and elsewhere), then you probably aren’t aware that ‘fitta’ is a Norwegian slang word for the female reproductive organ.
Nissan Moco Japanese carmakers clearly have no regard for the Spanish speaking world, with Nissan the offender here. Thankfully the Moco was only marketed in Japan as this is the Spanish word for “booger.”
VW Beetle OK, so this one is kind of a stretch, but the Hebrew word for Beetle transliterates as “Chipushit.” And that just sounds funny.
Hudson Wasp Built in the 1950s, the Hudson Wasp meant no offense at all, although an elite few may have taken an instant disliking to it. Whether that had anything to do with the Hudson brand name being pulled at the end of 1957 remains a mystery.