Most people are aware that the Chevrolet Nova was not a big seller in Mexico, for the obvious reason that “no va” translates to “not going” or “it does not go” in Spanish.
There are, however, some lesser-known examples of car names that were not entirely successful.
Nissan SNOT: Originally an acronym for Synergistic Naturalistic Operational Transport, this mid-engine Nissan bragged that drivers would be able to pack as much luggage as they needed in its nose. Japanese marketers failed to connect the acronym with the word.
Diahatsu Dîarria: Described in marketing literature as “the slickest new car around,” Americans may have rejected this model due to cramped conditions in the driver’s seat.
Volkswagen Kråutenjap: Named after a popular Bavarian flower, the Kråutenjap sold especially poorly in Russia, the United States, and England, despite the car makers’ market research suggesting it would assume global domination in a few short years and had the potential to “be the car for the next thousand years.”
Kia Cunt: This sleek design took its name from a colorful South Korean bird. The Cunt sold well in the Pacific Rim nations, but failed to catch on in the West. Marketing strategy was aimed at making Cunts the most desirable item in the world, particularly with men. Kia forecast that if successful, half of all Americans would have a Cunt.