Some vehicle brand names have become synonymous with luxury and prestige, while others style and safety. Whatever vehicle brand names have come to be known for, some of their origins may have remained a mystery upon consumers. How did today’s automakers get their monikers?
While many auto brands are named after the founder of the company, notably Ford, Honda, Lamborghini, the list can go on and on… there are still many company names that weren’t derived from the founder’s name.
Take Lincoln for example, a name chosen by the car’s developer Henry Leland due to the fact that Abraham Lincoln was the president he had cast his first vote for. Subaru, the Japanese version of a cluster of stars called the Pleiades is iconic in its’ six star logo correlating to the six company merger making up Fuji (the Subaru automaker). Another case of cultural reference is Mazda, the combination of the company’s owner Jujiro Matsuda and Ahura Mazda, an Asian god of wisdom and harmony.
But one name still remains a mystery: Jeep. Whether the name originated from GP (General Purpose Vehicle), or Ford’s model name for it, GPW, or even a cartoon character in Popeye the Sailorman, no one really knows.