Israel slams Holden's SS badge

22 February 2013
, CarsGuide
Israel slams Holden's SS badge

The SS (Super Sport) name for the Holden Commodore rebadged as a Chevrolet has been condemned by a Hebrew newspaper as having a Nazi reference -- and threatened with being banned from entry.

A report in The Times of Israel quotes Hebrew daily Yedioth Ahronoth slamming the badging because of association with the notorious Nazi SS unit led by Heinrich Himmler under Adolf Hitler’s reign of terror across Europe.

According to the report, the name was critised by Barach Shuv -- a manager of the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial and chairman of the Organization of Partisans, Underground Fighters and Ghetto Rebels.

“The use of this name is very inappropriate,” Shuv is cited as saying in the Yedioth story. “It is not a name that will bring them pride or success.”

Chevrolet has previously used the full name Super Sport, and this is the first time the abbreviation has been used as a Chev badge – although it’s been seen on Holdens for decades. There have been no instances of official Jewish criticism in Australia of the Holden name during that time.

However it’s not the first car name with an unintended wartime association. The Toyota Avalon was planned to be called the Centaur until it was pointed out that was the name of an Aussie hospital ship sunk by the Japanese during World War II.

And few people would criticise the Volkswagen badge, despite the name coming from the ‘folks wagon’ vehicle born as part of Hitler’s Nazi policy.

This journalist is on Twitter: @KarlaPincott