Automotive engineering translation service
Automotive engineering translation is a technical translation, which ranges:
- from instruction manuals
- to marketing releases.
Any sort of technical translation, no matter the industry, has its own unique set of challenges.
Find here several factors to take into consideration when translating for the automotive industry.
Technical automotive engineering translation
The motor-vehicle world jargon can almost be considered a separate language in itself; thus, the need for a specialized automotive engineering translation service appears.
Even in your first language, technical texts like this can be particularly challenging to understand if you don’t have a firm grasp of the specialized vocabulary.
Therefore, any translators wishing to tackle automotive texts must:
- not only have a deep understanding of both the source and target languages,
- but they must also be well-acquainted with technical automotive vocabulary in both languages
International marketing through localization
As if that weren’t already complicated enough, we also need to take into consideration the sociolinguistic factors that come into play when keeping in mind the globalized nature of the industry nowadays.
Any successful automotive business striving to compete in an international market must also be aware of cultural factors that may influence their success in any given part of the world.
It’s one thing to translate an owner’s manual accurately and clearly, but breaking into a foreign market is an entirely different animal that requires taking translation another step further into localization.
➤ Localization is a term that refers to the process of adapting a text culturally to make it both understandable and appealing to the target audience.
At its most basic level, it requires:
- not only translating the text accurately,
- but for example, also converting units of measurement to those used in the target country.
⤷ An American car company trying to market its cars in Europe may need to turn:
- miles per hour to kilometers per hour
- dollars to euros
⤷ To ensure that this new foreign audience fully understands the information communicated.
While these may seem mere details, research has proven that the cultural adaptation of these bits of information contributes significantly to a consumer’s willingness to buy a product or hire a service.
After all, who would buy a product without fully understanding what’s their investment?
As we peel away the layers of sociolinguistic barriers, we find that it is also necessary to adapt:
- the images that marketing campaigns use
- and the messages they convey,
⤷ to make the information culturally relevant and appealing to the target market.
For example, Eastern cultures might not accept Western values of individualism:
If an American car commercial translated for an Asian market, for instance, contains strong elements of individualism, the target culture might consider it off-putting,
⤷ which may discourage potential customers from buying.
A well-rounded translator who is aware of these dynamics would:
- not only have a firm grasp of the linguistic aspects of localization but
- also needs to be deeply knowledgeable in regards to cultural differences between the source and target countries.
Models for success in automotive translation
A case study published in 2017, which analyzed:
- PSA Peugeot Citroën’s activity in the Brazilian market and
- how core issues in the field of translation studies surfaced, in the company’s international marketing strategy,
↳ illustrates the enormous role that translation and localization play in a globalized automotive industry.
This study illustrates how this small French automotive company:
- remained sensitive to changes in communication dynamics and
- adapted their translation strategies accordingly,
⤷ successfully connecting with a Brazilian market that the market considered peripheral until then.
In 2011, PSA Peugeot Citroën ranked the 7th car manufacturer in the world, with sales in 160 countries and 12 assembly plants in 6 countries,
↳ demonstrating that it is possible to succeed in foreign markets with a flexible and thought-out translation and localization strategy.
The first thing that comes to mind when you think of translation for the automotive industry is the technical translation for owner’s manuals and engineering blueprints, but, as crucial as these are,
⤷ marketing also comes into the picture in less obvious ways.
This range of possibilities points to the need for a team of translators with diverse skills.
➤ We can only build international relationships upon adequate communication.
Due to this link with the communication field, it’s paramount to hire knowledgeable translators who are:
- marketing experts
- with a deep understanding of both the source and target cultures
Technical translators will be able to supply these skills by providing the necessary automotive knowledge.
Although there is no smooth formula for success, because the picture is multi-layered and the path is winding: