Bodacious Tatas not very appealing

Is it just me, or is Tata a terribly unfortunate name for a car company? Unfortunate if they want to sell cars in the U.S., anyway. Don’t companies consider these things when branding their products? (Apologies to Mr. Tata, but marketing is marketing.) Remember the Chevy Nova (“No va” is Spanish for “it doesn’t go”)? Not a big seller south of the border.

Tata Motors is Indian and one of its cars, the Nano, is supposed the be the cheapest production car in the world (US $2500). (I hope cheap is not the word being used by their marketing department.) Small, inexpensive cars make a lot of sense in a poor, overcrowded country like India, and Tata has plans to sell their cars worldwide. They may do very well, but I wouldn’t bet on their success in English-speaking countries.

For starters, I would be absolutely terrified driving a car that size in the Denver metro. SUVs and trucks make up a large percentage of the traffic here, and I’m fearful enough already of being run over by someone who doesn’t see my low-profile coupe.

That’s only part of the problem, of course. If the car got 100 mpg, was the size of a Sherman tank, and had the ratings of a Toyota Camry, I still wouldn’t buy it. No way, no how would I be caught driving something called a Tata. (I’ve always wanted a pair of bodacious tatas, but not in my garage!)


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Note, Sept. 26, 2018: Tata is still going strong.

5 thoughts on “Bodacious Tatas not very appealing

  1. I had NO idea of the Chevy Nova and what it meant in Spanish, how funny! And,… “just not in my garage” OMG, you are hilarious!
    That’s me. Just here for the amusement of others. 🙂

  2. The Nano will only increase the pressure on our already overstressed infrastructure. Ask me, I am Indian.
    I do wonder how crowded nations like yours can support a rapid increase in automobile traffic. And yet, won’t it bring manufacturing jobs and income to India? Admittedly it’s difficult for me to imagine more cars in China when I see pictures of the horribly polluted air in Beijing.

  3. Actually, that’s a myth. “Nova” means “new” in Spanish. The myth depends on people in it being dumb, as many myths do. Would you not go to a restaurant named the Notable, because you thought that meant you had to stand to eat?

    But, yes, they should change the name for the US and probably some other areas. I’m already seeing “Bodacious Tatas” jokes.

    (Don’t get me started on the Chevy Beretta…)
    Based on the Spanish I learned in high school, the translation for “no va” is perfectly valid and not a myth, although you make a good point about the one word / two words. I can’t confirm that “nova” means “new” (I learned “nuevo” or “nueva” was “new”), but no doubt Spanish continues to evolve just as English does.

  4. >Would you not go to a restaurant named the Notable, because you thought that meant you had to stand to eat?

    Quite off topic, but actually Japan has restaurants called 「立ち食い」 where you stand and eat.
    They do have tables (that are higher than usual tables) though…but no chairs.
    I was just trying to make a point about marketing. Names are extremely important to a company or product’s image and in a global market, the job has gotten more difficult. Considering how a name translates to potential customers is always part of the process.

    I take it that kanji translates as “no table”? I think I’ve seen places like that here, the idea being that hurried office workers on short lunch breaks eat on the run anyway. And it allows more customers in a given space.

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