The answer is…
Both! Most of us may know tuna as a type of fish. But tuna is indeed the name of a fruit in another language – Peruvian-Spanish.
The Roman alphabet only has 26 letters but is utilized by more than a hundred languages across the globe. Inevitably, there are limited permutations and certain languages end up having words that are spelt or pronounced the same way.
We may know “abort” as the word for cancelling or stopping something, but in German, “abort” is also an archaic word for toilet. The word “burro” also has vastly different meanings in Italian and Spanish. Asking for “burro” in Italy will get you butter, but try asking for it in Spain. You’ll get a donkey instead. The word “gift” refers to a present in English but in German, it refers to “poison”.
As such coincidences exist, brands have to be extra careful with the brand names they choose when launching the brand in another market to avoid disastrous results.
Stay tuned for our next post that revolves around car names in our 3 part series.