(Founded in 1916) “BMW is a German multinational company which produces automobiles and motorcycles. The company was founded in 1916 as a manufacturer of aircraft engines, which it produced from 1917 until 1918 and again from 1933 to 1945. Automobiles are marketed under the brands BMW, Mini and Rolls-Royce, and motorcycles are marketed under the brand BMW Motorrad. In 2015, BMW was the world’s twelfth-largest producer of motor vehicles, with 2,279,503 vehicles produced.” – Wikipedia
This week BMW revealed a brand new logo that intends to represent an “openness and clarity” according to Jens Thiemer, Senior Vice President Customer & Brand BMW. The new-look was unveiled along with the news of the new BMW concept i4 and this is where we will see the new logo go into production first.
There isn’t really much to be said about the new logo design. Overall, it structurally remains the same, with the quadrants of colours within the circle in the centre, the letters still remaining in the same position and finished with an outer ring.
The most radical change that BMW has made is removing the black ring and replacing it with a transparent one. Jens Thiemer says “With this new transparent variant, we want to invite our customers more than ever to become part of the BMW world.”
We don’t usually see transparent logos that use white text although this bold decision is inspired. The transparent logo works well on BMW’s upcoming i4 electric saloon concept and will also work across digital platforms. We’ll have to see how will the logo work on a white BMW? Signage? Or even across stationary?
BMW have added the new logo re-design to their article titled the BMW logo – meaning and history. As you can see, it looks like BMW have taken a step backwards with a design that resembles a similar logo they used in 1963. The only noticeable difference Is that the letters have changed, with the letter M be the most noticeable. With a brand the size of BMW, we would expect the brand re-design to have much more of an impact and be out of this world. However, as we have seen in recent years a lot of companies such as GoDaddy, Facebook, and Volkswagen, big brands have gone down the route of flat-design and minimalism.
With all that said, stripping a logo back isn’t always a failure. For example, look at Volkswagens (VW) re-design last year. VW stripped their logo back to aim to make them more digital-friendly. They also wanted a way to illuminate the logo when it goes into production on their electric vehicles.
However, BMW removing the black ring and adding a transparent one may make it hard to recognise the new logo from a distance. Sadly, this shows the kinds of challenges this new approach may take.
What are your thoughts on the 2020 re-design?