Chevrolet

Re-Naming Product Naming
Naming Architecture Naming Guidelines
Naming Partnership

Since the Chevy brand’s rebirth in 2008, Chevrolet is now making the best cars in the company’s history, competing on a global level to create innovative, powerful, and intelligent vehicles – a shift in vision significant enough for many to dub them “the New Chevrolet”.  The Naming Group’s slice of this history is to inform how naming can push this evolution forward. With a namescape as eclectic as Camaro, Suburban, Tahoe and Volt, Chevrolet needed a better-defined vision for future naming efforts to accomplish the spiritual cohesiveness that the brand needed to refine its position in consumers’ minds.

THE CHEVROLET NAMESCAPE

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In addition to naming a number of new entries, including Sonic, Spin, Trax and Silverado High Country (with more on the horizon), ...
In addition to naming a number of new entries, including Sonic, Spin, Trax and Silverado High Country (with more on the horizon), The Naming Group partnered with Chevrolet at the corporate level to hone a vision  for the namescape that creates a more cohesive statement about how each vehicle contributes to what it means to be a Chevrolet. In short, it’s about energy.  A look at the names of recent models around the world, Traverse, Cruze, Volt, Sonic, Spark, Spin: the names all capture energy, motion, vibrancy – both in what they literally mean, and in how they sound and feel. This kind of namescape consistency is what deepens understanding of the brand’s forward-looking vision. And as Chevy moves onward, this spirit will only strengthen what the brand represents, paving the road to new names that will continue telling this re-energized story. Key outcomes of our multi-year partnership have been: Enhanced Globality: Guidelines for more comprehensive linguistic screening to better support global vehicle launches. Efficient Naming Processes: Directives to encourage starting projects earlier and with more upfront strategic work. Stakeholder Engagement: Process modifications to include c-level leadership earlier and more regularly in the naming process.
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SONIC

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Sonic was the first of many names created in our naming partnership with GM. With a major overhaul of the ill-reputed Aveo ...
Sonic was the first of many names created in our naming partnership with GM. With a major overhaul of the ill-reputed Aveo model, Chevy was ready to take the market by storm with a faster, more efficient, and still remarkably affordable small vehicle.  Doing so required connecting to a new audience that – like small cars themselves – were underrepresented in the Chevy story: young, gen-Y drivers. SONIC is speedy, energetic, literally loud, and delivers that youthful exuberance that Chevy launched with an action-packed campaign. It fits alongside the namescape vision set in motion by names like Cruze and Volt, with the bold, brash energy that the vehicle commands. It was a bold move to put such a bombastic name on such a small vehicle, but that’s the power of the name Sonic – and this little powerhouse could certainly handle it.
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GM’s CMO DISCUSSES THE NAMING GROUP’S WORK ON THE CHEVROLET NAMESCAPE

GM’s CMO DISCUSSES THE NAMING GROUP’S WORK ON THE CHEVROLET NAMESCAPE

SILVERADO HIGH COUNTRY

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  Deep in the heart of America there are cowboys and there are “blue jean millionaires.” This truck’s for the ...
  Deep in the heart of America there are cowboys and there are “blue jean millionaires.” This truck’s for the latter. Chevrolet called on us to develop a name for this luxury version of the Silverado – a name that would bring their heritage brand to a new tier of quality – for an audience that seeks unmatched ruggedness and refinement, with a Western flair. With other names in the industry like Ram’s Laramie Longhorn and Ford’s King Ranch that both captured “special edition” with a distinctly Texan identity, we recommended positioning Chevy’s version differently with a name that rings premium, rugged, and Western but resonates powerfully with Texans and non-Texans alike. High Country tows that line perfectly, with a word like “High” automatically connoting best-in-class trim line, elevating the vehicle above potentially lower-quality “country western” perceptions, but retaining the romantic character of the West.    
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TRAX

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With more and more drivers wanting a city vehicle that could go to the country, Chevrolet decided to up its compact crossover ...
With more and more drivers wanting a city vehicle that could go to the country, Chevrolet decided to up its compact crossover SUV game. To lead that charge, we developed Trax  – a name that speaks to the trekking, wilderness explorer with the truncation of “-cks” to a modern, edgy  “x” quite literally mirroring the compact nature of the car. This phonetically sharp and impactful name meshes seamlessly within Chevy’s lineup of vibrant, action- oriented model names – alongside the likes of Volt, Cruze, Spark, and Sonic.
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SPIN

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One of the most enticing parts of the Chevrolet brand in foreign markets is the deep American spirit. For this reason, part ...
One of the most enticing parts of the Chevrolet brand in foreign markets is the deep American spirit. For this reason, part of the global namescape strategy was to use English words even in foreign markets. This also sets Chevrolet apart from other automakers who often opt for the more amorphous, Romance language-rooted coined words as names. We developed Spin for Chevy’s  midsize MPV – a name that quickly imparts speed, energy, spinning wheels, and, of course, taking a spin: boldly answering the need for a car that thrives amid life’s hectic juggling act. Spin does so in a way that’s as impactful to Spanish and Portuguese (and a number of other international language) speakers as it is in English. And like other new names in their portfolio – Sonic, Cruze, Spark, Trax – Spin’s compact phonetics and bold, motive energy advance the Chevy namescape beautifully.
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