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What Do the Volkswagen Car Names Mean?

2022 Volkswagen Tiguan

Considering a certain Volksagen model, such as the Atlas SUV or Jetta sedan? You may be wondering, “Where do the car names for Volkswagen models come from?” We here at Ide VW of East Rochester have answers, so read on to learn the unique history and backstory behind the car names for Volkswagen. 

Volkswagen Car Names: Inspiration & History 

You might just be astonished to learn the meaning and significance (or lack thereof) to certain Volkswagen car names. Let’s run through the new VW model lineup now to dissect what each name means:

  • Volkswagen Arteon: The sophisticated look and feel of the Arteon are embodied by its model name. It should come as no surprise that Arteon comes from the root Latin word, “Artem,” which means art. 
  • Volkswagen Atlas: The VW Atlas is named after the titan who holds the Earth on his shoulders, and rightly so. After all, the VW Atlas is the flagship VW SUV, providing three rows of standard seating, ample towing capacity, and more.
  • Volkswagen Golf: Three of the cars in the Volkswagen lineup (Golf, Jetta, and Passat) are named after natural phenomena. “Golfstrom” is German for Gulf Stream, and that’s where the Golf gets its name. If you were thinking that this model was named for its ability to fit in a set of golf clubs, you’re sadly mistaken (although this certainly is a practical VW offering).
  • Volkswagen ID.4: The Volkswagen ID.4 is a battery electric vehicle, or BEV. ID stands for “intelligent design”, identity, and visionary technologies. It follows the ID.3, hence the number.
  • Volkswagen Jetta: The Jetta derives its model name from the German word for “Jet Stream.”
  • Volkswagen Passat: In German, Passatwinde means “trade winds.” This is where the word “Passat” comes from. 
  • Volkswagen Taos: The Volkswagen Taos was initially released as the Volkswagen Tharu in China. Two years later, it was restyled and released in North and South America as Taos. Named after the small yet mighty town of Taos, New Mexico, this compact SUV distills the pioneering spirit of the American southwest into a wholly German-engineered SUV offering.
  • Volkswagen Tiguan: Tiguan is a fusion of two words: tiger and leguan. These are the German words for tiger and iguana. Powerful as a tiger but versatile as the camouflaging iguana, the Tiguan is as versatile as your Pittsford and Webster needs require. 

How Did Volkswagen Get Its Name? 

You might also be wondering how the brand “Volkswagen” earned its name as a whole. It’s quite simple, actually. In German, Volkswagen means “people’s car.” 

Shop for Your New Volkswagen at Ide VW of East Rochester! 

Ready to shop for your next Volkswagen model near Fairport? Ide VW of East Rochester is here to help make that happen, regardless of your preferred model. Check out our new inventory now to find something you like or utilize our vehicle reservation process for a more streamlined and individualized experience.


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