Congratulations are in order for Dutch Rail (NS) following the launch of a new brand name which, the company says, is a ‘milestone in transport history’ and a ‘new vision on mobility’.

The launch was made with great pomp and ceremony at the AutoRAI car show – an interesting place to launch a train service, but there you go.
So, what is this great innovation and earth-shattering brand? It is ‘Hispeed’ – yes, you read correctly, ‘Hispeed’. Hispeed is the new name for Dutch Rail’s high-speed train services.
One wonders what sort of creative genius came up with a name which no-one with more than a few words of English will ever pronounce as anything other than ‘his peed’.
Doubtless, the new name was devised by branding experts and fully tested on endless passenger panels at great expense. So who are we to point out a simple hyphen would have been enough to make it clear what the NS was actually talking about? Or, indeed simply capitalising the ‘s’.
This is, of course, the same company which last week said that ticket prices for peak periods would go up sharply when the government introduces road pricing in 2011 – otherwise the trains would be too full. Brilliant logic.
And as for Hispeed – it deserves to go down in corporate name history. A milestone indeed.

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