Hyundai changes official pronunciation to 'Hyun-day'

By dpa | 24 January 2023

LONDON: Hyundai is formally adopting a new pronunciation of its name in the UK after admitting in a new advertising campaign that many people get it wrong.

Hyundai is changing the previous anglicised pronunciation of "High-un-die" to the pronunciation "Hyun-day" which is also used in the US.

The name had been wrongly pronounced by many English speakers because the firm used to adapt the sound of its name in advertising to make it simpler for various local populations to pronounce.

"It won't be easy to change decades of customer habit," said Hyundai's UK managing director Ashley Andrew.

"We predict a period of confusion among punters – a theme covered in a new TV advert, which sees people Googling the wrong thing with the old pronunciation," said the manager.

In the ad, a woman's voice says: "If you think you know our cars and how to say our name, maybe it's time to think again."

The name Hyundai comes from the Korean word hyeondae, which translates to "modernity" in English, representing the company's philosophy of "continuous innovation".

Hyundai meanwhile commissioned a survey of 2,000 adults in Britain which highlighted that 45% turn to a dictionary or thesaurus to double check the pronunciation of other tricky words like quinoa and zoology.