May 6, 2006
Auto Product Naming: BMW is at it again
They have two new concept cars under development, code-named RFK-1 and RFK-2. "RFK" stands for "raum funktionales konzept" or "functional-space concept." The spy photos show a vehicle that frankly looks like it was designed for of Rommel’s Afrika Korps.
But this vehicle is designed to set the trend for roomy flexibility, taking direct aim at the Mercedes-Benz R-Class. Many US car lovers will note that the letters RFK have distinct Democratic overtones, making one wonder if the engineers in Bavaria are sending a subtle message to the Republicans who make up the bulk of this brand’s target market in the USA.
The alpha-numeric name of this car is in line with the established trend in luxury car and product naming that keeps focus on the parent brand, a subject I have written about in some depth in these pages: Product Naming: Luxury Brands Battle of the Alphabet.
At the beginning of the year I took a look at how even hoary old Lincoln has gone alphanumeric in its brand naming, renaming its luxury Aviator the MKX. The MKX will not be competing hard against the RFK as BMW is focusing here not on "bling" but on offering a practical "people carrier."
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