Ideal line and sportcar

I have previously mentioned an example of a major company falling into the literal translation trap in a presentation, see here. Today, I came across another such case, and the victim (or culprit?) is BMW. On their Facebook page, a presumably German employee translated the German expression “Ideallinie” as “ideal line”, although the correct English term is “racing line“. (It refers to the fastest line around a racing course.)

Another example of an incorrect literal translation I found on the same Facebook page is the use of the term “sportcar” instead of sports car. First, it reflects a tendency of German native speakers to combine words that are supposed to be separate. Second, the correct use of “sport” often requires the plural form “sports” in English, such as in “sports club” or “sports news”.





One thought on “Ideal line and sportcar

  1. Pronunciation False Friends – painfulenglish

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