The whole point is that Khan is supposed to be a super-genius, Wily Coyote-style. If he's so smart, why would he say something as stupid as "behind the aft nacelle"? Why doesn't Spock react to his blunder? And, for that matter, if he knew where the life support system was, why didn't he destroy it with his opening salvo?
Answer: Because the film makers don't care about any of that.
In-universe possible answer: Khan doesn't care about Federation terminology.