When referring to a piece in Chinese chess (Xiangqi), 車 should be pronounced as jū or ㄐㄩ, instead of chē (ㄔㄜ). It is understandable that not every native speaker knows this pronunciation. However, I was surprised to hear professional Xiangqi players call the piece the wrong way. After all, if Xiangqi is their profession, how come that they do not even know how to pronounce the piece correctly?
Because in 廣韻 (a Chinese rime dictionary from 1000 years ago), 車 has two different pronunciations, 1: kio and 2: chja. As time goes by, 1 becomes ju and 2 becomes che. In ancient Chinese, 1(ju) refers to combat vehicles, 2(che) indicates the means of transport for carrying heavy objects. Although these two different meanings are now included in 2, but the ancient pronunciation is still retained in the Xiangqi pieces 車