Does 汽車 (기차) mean “train” or “car”?

Answer: In Korea, 汽車 (기차) means “train,” but in China it means “car.”

汽車 (기차) literally means “steam car (汽) (車)”, which sounds like a good description of early steam locomotives, so I’m wondering why in China the word “steam car” refers to a car rather than a train? Alternatively, the Chinese word for “train” is 火車 (화차), which literally means “car (火) fire (車)”.

By the way, the Chinese word for “taxi” is 計 (계정 기차), which can be literally translated as “compute trip (計) steam (汽) car (車).

From Dong-A’s Prime Korean-English Dictionary

Leave a Comment