Encyclopedia Hoonatica: Meteorological Car Names

Last week, the encyclopedia entry for Seafaring Car Names sailed into uncharted territory, with regular commenters Jeepster and Manic_King expounding on the many cars named after winds. Well, the chest of automotive trivia booty they blew our way may not have been strictly applicable to the category at hand, but the list was impressive. Furthermore, that sort of “talk amongst yourselves” moment is exactly what makes this series so rewarding, and is something to be encouraged. Therefore, in response, this week we will explore their serendipitous discussion further, while expanding the category beyond wind names to all sorts of meteorological phenomena. If it’s something naturally occurring in the atmosphere, feel free to toss that sucker in the ring. (Assuming, of course, that you can provide evidence that a vehicle has been thus named. I am not the trivia god some of you are, but I strongly doubt that anybody has yet marketed the Thundersnow, Sun Dog, Lunar Halo or Convection Fog, despite all being potentially totally awesome car names. …Wait, no — not that last one.)
The Caveats (there are always caveats):

  • Unofficial and internal nicknames don’t count, even if they’re well known. The name must be officially given by the manufacturer (which could include a coachbuilder, famous customizer or or other recognized marketing entity). A good yardstick is that it should physically appear on the car, or at least appear in a press release or sales brochure.
    • Sub-brands and trim line names count.
    • Concept vehicles, kit cars, and race cars are allowable, as long as it is something legit enough to have a genuine name. Your crazy Uncle Charlie’s band bus doesn’t count, even if he did spraypaint “Hellwind” down the side.
    • Motorcycles and trucks are also permitted, but no aircraft. Really, no aircraft; I’m not just saying that because it’s a running joke — this week in particular, a list including aircraft names would swallow our souls.

    Difficulty: The answer is blowin’ in the wind.
    How This Works: Read the comments first and don’t post duplicates! Bonus points for adding photos. Remember, you can simply paste in the raw image URL now, thanks to the magic of Disqus.
    Image Sources: oldcarbrochures.org and the random download car images folder on my Mac.


    1. VW was to call the Corrado the Typhun but GM beat them to the punch.
      Corrado is probably some wind-related thing like “Golf”…

      1. I’m not sure that ‘Corrado’ is actually a wind, but it followed the ‘Scirocco’ and was built in parallel with the ‘Bora’ — so it should have been.

        1. Corrado has its roots in the Spanish word for run (like corrida) so it marks a break with VW’s usual wind names

        2. Most VW names are weather system related, Golf isn’t named after the sport, but rather the German for Gulf (as in gulfstream). Passat is German for trade wind. Vento (a booted Golf MK3, I think the US stuck with Jetta) is Italian for wind. Likewise the booted Golf Mk4 the Bora, is an eastern european weather system.

      1. CBR600F’s aren’t until August anyway. It’s a shame they’re best viewed from the southern hemisphere.

        1. That might be the nicest that era Tempest that has ever existed, and it’s $2,000.
          I kinda feel bad for it now.

          1. Well the rest have collapsed into a pile of iron oxide and wheels that look slightly weird when mounted on them.

    1. I will own one, I have gone look at several in the past few years but they have all been just too far gone rust wise. I believe this will be my first target for a fly and drive in a year or two. Before they all disappear.

    1. …as they also made a Mistral, a Bora, a Khamsin, a Shamal and their new SUV is rumoured to be called the ‘Levante’.
      Disappointingly, there do not seem to be any winds called ‘Biturbo’, ‘Quattroporte’ or ‘Gran Turismo MC Sportline’. There should be.

      1. I think the Aztec is about as close a mashup as there ever was of a Geo Storm and tracker.

    1. Technically this works as well. I’m sure Solara means “Sun” in some language, amirite?

      1. In the same way that “altima” and “sorento” mean something in some language.
        (That language is Marketing Jargon, the faux-Italian dialect.)

          1. It doesn’t count according to the rules, but the car that became the Sunbeam Tiger was originally going to be called Thunderbolt until they ran into copyright problems.

      1. It was. Kawasaki got a cease-and-desist letter from Ford in early 1992, and what had been the Zephyr 750 and 1100 became known simply as the ZR750 and ZR1100 (in the USA, they continued to use the Zephyr name in other markets).

    1. Thumbs up for the Zephyr. It’s a shame they didn’t sell better in the US. (Tangential: I’ve owned an ’81 KZ750E & a ’99 ZRX1100, members of the Zephyr’s extended family.)

      1. It was a Canada-exclusive thing, Pontiac dealers wanted everything Chevy dealers sold, so they got rebadges of a ton of stuff.

    1. The Asüna is more fun if you really want to confuse foreigners.

      Actually, Asüna confuses everybody…

      1. Along with all of the Colonnade series. And the pagoda-roof Mercs. Or the Isuzu Piazza.
        …ahh, now you have started me on a sidetrack.

  1. For many years now Ford UK has used ‘Thunder’ as a baseline trim & stickers package on many of their models.

  2. Just as a heads-up, Dudes and Dudettes, stars, constellations, and astronomical phenomena are not meteorological. There’s no weather or atmosphere in outer space.

  3. HSV Maloo ute, which is an Aboriginal word for thunder.
    Holden have also used Thunder as a special edition ute.
    Mazda did a 626 Eclipse special edition

  4. I went riding on the beach the other day and met this creepy couple who tried to seduce my horse…….

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