What’s in a name? Names of Kia cars by region
Stinger, Optima, Cadenza… how do our vehicles get their names?
A name should embody the overall personality, design, and feel of the car as a whole. The very first step in naming a car is to define its character. Is it fast? Is it bold? Is it melodious? Clear references – names of animals for instance – are largely preferred. The proposed name also must be checked for violation of trademarks.
Most importantly, the name must be cross-checked for cultural context in each and every region of the world. A name in one language can mean something completely different, which calls for a whole new name just for that region. Some of our very own vehicles often sport different names by region – read on to see what they are.
The Carnival vs. Sedona
This family-friendly minivan suited for all kinds of family errands, events, and trips is known by two different names. Some regions refer to the car as the Grand Carnival, a name that stems from the Latin word for “festival”, emphasizing its free, leisure-seeking image. In other regions, the car is known as the Sedona, named after a small town in Arizona. The name was bestowed on the minivan to capture its outdoorsy and elegant essence without being too geographically obvious.
Instead of naming each sedan, Kia in South Korea groups its line of sedans together, creating the K series. The K is taken from “Kia”, “Korea”, and the Greek word “Kratos” meaning active. The number that comes after the K increases as the class of the car increases.
Cerato vs. Forte vs. K3
This stylish compact sedan is widely known as the Forte but is also known as the Cerato, both names representing the car’s bold characteristics. In particular, the Forte comes from the Middle French word “fort” meaning strong. Forte also happens to be a musical term that signals the musician to play – you guessed it – strong when appearing on sheet music. The Forte is known as the K3 in South Korea.
Optima vs. K5
Except for South Korea, the rest of the world refers to this sophisticated sedan as the Optima. “Optima” comes from the Latin word “Optimus” meaning best, bonus. Considering everything from its design to power, one cannot deny that the Optima is the best. In South Korea, the Optima is referred to as the K5.
Quoris vs. K9 vs. K900
This premium luxury sedan combines the two words “core” and “quality” in its name Quoris. While this is the name known most-widely internationally, the United States mimics the South Korean label of K9. But the United States adds two zeros – K900 – to avoid confusion with a police dog.
A lot of thought and care goes into naming each and every one of our vehicles. What do you think of the Kia names now? Which name do you think suites the car best?