This is the second part of the article on how car companies got their names, you can find the first part here . In the first article we tried our best to explain the history behind each car company’s name from Alfa Romeo to Ferrari, today we will continue with FIAT and finish with Nissan.
22. FIAT Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (Italian Automobile Manufacturer Turin).
23. FORD Henry Ford (1863-1947), at the beginning founded the Henry Ford Company in 1901, and later in 1903 the Ford Motor Company.
24. JAGUAR It was named by the animal Jaguar wanting to emphasize the speed and grace of the company’s cars.
25. JEEP The term Jeep comes from military terminology. During World War I the engineers of the army called every new vehicle that they were testing “Jeep”. In the 30s when they used the term GP (General Purpose) it sounded like saying Jeep. This name appeared at the same time and in the comic series of Popeye, with the character Eugene the Jeep that could only say “Jeep”. The name however was established in the minds of the world during the Second World War when the multipurpose vehicle Willys Quarter-Ton Jeep was used extensively by the US.
26. HONDA Soichiro Honda (1906-1991) was an engineer and founded Honda in 1948. At first the company produced only motorcycles and in 1964 they started producing cars.
27. HUMMER In 1979 AMGeneral designed for the US military a High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle, known as HMMWV which is pronounced as Humvee. Since 1988, Arnold Schwarzenegger wanted such a vehicle for civil use. He and 2,000 other celebrities, gave orders for the car and so in 1992 the first HMMWV for civil use came out, called HUMMER.
In 2001, GM bought the trade name HUMMER from AMGeneral and called the first HUMMER, H1. Only because since 2002, GM was planing to produce the HUMMER H2 and after the HUMMER H3 followed.
28. HYUNDAI Hyundai launched in April 1946 by Ju-Yung Chung. He first founded the Hyundai Auto Service in Seoul, at the age of 31, The name means fashionable, with the logo symbolizing two beings that make a firm handshake (the buyer and the company). The now known Hyundai Motor Company was founded by Ju-Yung Chung and his brother Se-Yung Chung in December 1967.
29. KIA The KIA was founded in 1944 as Hyungsung Precision Industry and manufactured tubes and bicycle parts. In 1952 they built their first bicycle and renamed the company to KIA Industrial Company. Kia means “rising from Asia” from “KI”=rises and “A”=Asia.
30. LADA Lada in Russian means “beautiful, small, dear”.
31.LAMBORGHINI The company was founded in 1963 and it got the name of its founder Ferrucio Lamborghini. Ferrucio had a company that used to build tractors and air conditioners and he als owned a Ferrari 250 GT, with which he was not fully satisfied, so he complained to Enzo Ferrari (founder of Ferrari), saying that the transmission of the car was having problems and he gave him advice on how to produce better cars. Ferrari responded by saying “What do you know of cars, by driving tractors?” and so Lamborghini got angry and in 7 May of 1963 founded his company, to compete with Ferrari.
32.LANCIA Vincenzo Lancia in cooperation with Claudio Fogolin founded the company in 1906. Although Vincenzo was only 25 years old, he was quite experienced, since he used to work on FIAT.
33.LEXUS The luxury car company owned by Toyota has taken its name from the union of two words which, according to its founders represent the brand’s philosophy: Luxury and Elegance.
34.LIGIER The company got its name from the French driver of Formula 1 Guy Ligier.
35.LINCOLN Named in honor of the assassinated US president, Abraham Lincoln.
36.MASERATI The four brothers Alfieri, Ettore, Ernesto and Bindo Maserati, founded the company in 1914.
37.LOTUS The company got its name from the famous plant.
38.MAZDA In Zoroastrianism Ahura Mazda is the God of Wisdom and according to tradition, he unites people by giving them the gift of reason. The name of the company is also similar to that of company’s founder Jujiro Matsuda.
39.MERCEDES The businessman Emil Jellinek, who had the exclusive distribution rights of Daimler cars in Austria, Hungary, France and the US renamed the cars to Mercedes (the name of his daughter).
40.MITSUBISHI Japanese word meaning “three diamonds” which in fact is the logo of Mitsubishi. Its founder Yataro Iwasaki started his business activity using three steamer boats in 1870. Since then the number “three” dominates the company whether in objectives or strategy or policies.
41.MORRIS William Richard Morris (1877-1963), began his career as a bicycle repairman to start producing motorcycles in 1901 and automobiles in 1913. The MG company takes its name from the initials of Morris Garage.
42.NISSAN In 1931 DATSUN was bought by THE TOBATA IMONO COMPANY and became part of it. Two years later it broke away from the mother company, moved its headquarters to Yokohama and became the independent automotive manufacturer Jidosha Seizo Kabushiki Kaisha. Funding came from the investment company called Nihon Sagyo which was directed by Yoshisuke Ayukawa owner of TOBATA IMONO. This investment company was already known all over Japan. Everyone knew it as Ni-San from the abbreviation of the name which appeared on the list of purchases and sales of stock. In 1934 Jidosha Seizo Kabushiki Kaisha renamed the company to NISSAN MOTOR COMPANY LIMITED.