Tiguan: Volkswagen Small SUV2
Just how do you pronounce a fake word?
It seems that after more than 100 years of building automobiles, the industry gets ever-more clever (or desperate) to find names for the proliferation of new models. And while an excellent product can overcome a bad name, a difficult or unfamiliar name can make getting the message across to potential new buyers more difficult. The latest new name announcement has come from Volkswagen. The name Tiguan will be proudly worn on an upcoming small SUV due to be found at VW dealers worldwide in 2008.
Looking to readers of the German magazine AutoBild to help make the final decision, the upcoming small SUV from VW will be called Tiguan. This is, according to a press release from VW, a name made up by VW Marketing and that will be associated with travel, adventure, and excitement.
Maybe Tiguan Sounds Good in German
We’re not sure it sounds exotic as VW claims and wish VW would have included a pronunciation key with the release. Maybe it sounds great in German, but how does it sound in English? We also wonder how exotic this name will sound being slaughtered by people all over the world making their best guess. Touareg required educating buyers and potential buyers on how to say it, but at least Touareg is an actual word.
More than 350,000 readers weighed in on the name choice, and VW reports that Tiguan received a clear majority of the votes. The names that lost were Nanuk, Namib, Rockton, and Samun. While Nanuk is a variation of the Inuit name for a polar bear (first spelled nanuq and nanook), Namib is a real word (a desert in Namibia), and there is at least one U.S. city named Rockton, Tiguan and Samun are made-up words. Though the readers polled presumably would claim German as their first language and may disagree, to us Tiguan looks the most difficult of the choices to pronounce. At one point, it was said that VW was considering calling this the Beduin. Here at AutoPacific and VehicleVoice, we’re of the opinion that Beduin is far better than any of the five options.
And how excited can you be about a car that you have to teach all your friends how to say? Buyers will get to make that choice in a few years, but what do you think?
The look of the small SUV was previewed at the 2006 Geneva auto show, in the Concept A.