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Kia Provo Concept

Kia’s new concept car, the Provo, has been striking all the wrong chords in both the England and the Emerald Isles due to “Provo” being the old-school name of the outlawed, militant arm of the Irish Republican Army. From 1970-1997, the Provisional IRA killed an estimated 1,800 people in response to the British Monarchy’s weighty boot having had been on Ireland’s green throat for more than 800 years.

British lawmakers, funny wigged blokes and birds all, called for Kia to change the name of its yet-to-make-it-into-production mini sports coupe to something less hurtful such as perhaps the Kia Cotton Ball. Explaining “Provo,” the South Korean automaker said that that name is a derivative of “provocative.” Kia has agreed not to sell the car with the name of “Provo” in the British Isles.

Talking about the name change decision, British lawmaker Gregory Campbell said:

“I accept that this was a mistake made by the company and I know that their decisive action will be welcomed by many people, in Northern Ireland and beyond, whose lives have been affected by the murderous actions of the Provisional IRA.”

Kia is not the first automaker to market a car with an ill-fitting name. There was the Mazda LaPuta, means “the whore” in Spanish, the Chevy Nova that translates to “doesn’t go” in the same language, and the short-lived Peugot Al Queda that failed to win fans in the US.


About the author: Andrew Greene


Now playing the role of grumpy old man in the foothills of Northern California’s Gold Country, Andrew has had a life-long love affair with vehicles of all sorts, from the bicycle he pedaled across the continent in 1991 to the armored personnel carriers he drove in the Army to the bamboo rafts, elephants, motorcycle taxis, ferries and buses he traveled by during the 13 years he lived and worked in South East Asia. Always eager to learn more about how the people of the world get from here to there in their day-today lives, he, a professional journalist, has been covering the vehicle industry for years.


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