• Chinese website localization
  • Teletubbies TV voiceover adaptation into French
  • SEO keywords PPC translation adaptation into French German Dutch
  • House TV trailer translation adaptation into French
  • Translation and DTP production into French of Logitech online product brochure
  • Advertisement transcreation cultural adaptation of Fiat M500 brochure



Missing the mark

We’ve all heard the story about the Chevy Nova, the car that wouldn’t go... in Spanish.

While this has later been deemed an urban legend by most, there is no shortage of eyebrow-raising, and even hilarious, examples of translations gone wrong. Here are some of our favorites:

“Nothing sucks like an Electrolux”

~Scandinavian vacuum cleaner manufacturer

“Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave”

~Chinese slogan to say “Come alive with the Pepsi Generation”

“It won’t leak in your pocket and make you pregnant”

~Parker Pen’s slogan in Mexico; they quickly found out “embarrass” has no relation to the Spanish verb “embarazar”

What are your favorites?

We’d love to hear about them, send us an email and you could see them posted here!

  • Virtual Words client: Leo Burnett

  • Virtual Words client: NCR

  • “We were so pleased with our local Japanese interpreter!”

  • Virtual Words client: AngloGold Ashanti

  • “This is the best technical translation my reviewer has ever seen!”

  • Virtual Words client: Comcast

  • Virtual Words client: Eaton Corporation

  • “Virtual Words has done a tremendous job translating our brochures & visuals into Spanish and Russian.”

  • Virtual Words client: Caritas Internationalis

  • Virtual Words client: Cordis

  •  “My next translation project will definitely be with Virtual Words!”

  •  Virtual Words client: Twestival



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