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June 17, 2010


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"There, the definition of 'coda' is given as 'a musical phrase that brings a piece to an end so a new one can begin.' And, the voiceover continues, 'that is just what this car can do: usher in the electric car era.'"

That's a rather forced bit of reasoning, isn't it? After all, the coda belongs to the piece that's ending, and it has nothing to do with the piece that follows (if any). On the other hand, 'Prelude' was already taken.

"Coda fits squarely into what’s becoming a predictable naming convention for electric vehicles. [...] They’re all four-letter, one-syllable names."

Well, Coda is two syllables, but other than that it's consistent with the Volt/Leaf/ZENN trend.

"a musical phrase that brings a piece to an end so a new one can begin."

This isn't a very good definition of coda in a musical sense -- I get the picture that they're trying to mold the definition of coda to fit their brand. A better musical term to fit their definition is "cadence" -- but that also sparks images of soldiers in march-step, which would be counter to the idea of breaking out of the norm of gas-powered machines.

Keeping with the idea of stopping one and starting another, the first terms that came into my head aren't very good: attacca and segue. Both can be used to indicate that a musician should continue on to the next musical piece without any break. Attacca sounds like an Italian armored SUV, and segue is pronounce "seg-way," which is already taken.

No other good musical terms come to mind for the message they're trying to convey.

Although, if they or some other company wanted to create a car with a "back to the basics" (presumably safety, comfort, and fuel efficiency could be considered "the basics"), "solfeggio" might be a good name. Solfeggio is the do-re-mi singing scale that's used for teaching basic scales to young vocalists.

CODA could stand for California's Only D____ Automobile. I'll let you and your readers decide what the D stands for.

Car Of Dubious Ancestry

Cabal Of Dark Arts

Cheese Or Dried Apples....

CODA: One Doubtful Acronym

Speaking of syllables, 'coda' is the name of the (optional) final consonant in a syllable.

"Car Of Dreams Almost"
Let's hope that the Coda company adds a model name such as "Coda Lectricar" or " Coda Catric" etc. "CODA" is worst than "BLAND" for me because it has absolutely no meaning ; graphically it looks like a parking space and phonetically sounds like someone's calling in sick,"I have a coda in my node" or making an excuse," I coda been a contenda."
I like " CODA BLUE ." It sounds French.

Can Only Drive Apres-Ski
(sorry, can't find the accent mark this morning - too early)

Odd reasoning and wrong musical definition aside, it's just a weird metaphor. Maybe it works for a hybrid - but electric cars are the future, right?

In addition to words about beginnings, I'd like ideas of starting anew or growing. We already have cars; this is their evolution.

"Modulation" has zero ring to it, but "Crescendo" sounds nicer. It connotes movement and building up (eg, to new technology), and it means "growing."

"Da Capo" is also nice. It means starting over again, and the plosives sound snappy.

Liz Nicole: Da capo di tutti capi?

Well, you're quite right. No need to argue about.

But (BUT! ;o)) on the other hand, I think these are nice failures (name and "actually" in their spot).

Well, in which car would or even could you trust more easily:
In the one of a small company that is paying a great deal of attention (and money) to their engeneers and developers and so there's less for namefinding and advertising?
Or in the one from a small company that splits its etat into a slice for the tech, but a big piece for namefinding and perfect advertising?
Just my 2 cents...I love languages and thinking about their perfect usage, meanings, puns, a.s.o. - but I'm quite pragmatic when it comes to tech/innovation/etc.

(and I'm a non-native speaker, btw, so don't flame me for spelling or grammar, but only for the content, please ;o))

Silke: Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. Of course product design and engineering are important--that goes without saying. But one's *first* impression of any company is likely to be its communications. Careless writing is the equivalent of careless personal grooming: a person may be a paragon of virtue, but if he doesn't brush his teeth or comb his hair, I may never learn about his good qualities . . . or even want to approach him. And when you're introducing a breakthrough product such as an electric car, it's doubly or triply important that you take pains to polish your message. Otherwise, how will consumers have confidence in you?

Compared to engineering or software development copywriting and editing are cheap and well worth the investment. Too many companies these days, however, regard language as a frill. I'm not saying that's true of Coda, which in general does a nice job with its copy, but it's an unfortunate trend.

And by the way, I happen to know that Coda paid a large sum for its name.

CODA = Califormia's own daft acronym?

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