The Chevrolet logo is the symbol of one of those brands that everybody instantly equates with quality. One of the oldest car makers in existence, Chevrolet was started by Louis Chevrolet and William C. Durant in November of 1911. Back then, the old company was called the Chevrolet Motor Car Company.
What’s interesting about the Chevrolet logo is that despite the fact that the company has a very long history, their logo only changed its shape once. While the color and interior of the original Chevrolet logos has changed quite a bit over the years, the shape has remained consistently the same since 1913.
Chevrolet Logo Design Elements
While many images come to mind when thinking about the world-famous car company, perhaps the most memorable is the Chevrolet bowtie logo.
Seen as a cross by most of the world and as a bowtie by most of North America, the Chevrolet logo meaning has had many interpretations over the course of its long history. Even more interestingly, its origins are still uncertain, as experts are debating to this day how it first came to be. So, what is the Chevrolet logo and what is its meaning?
Changes and Evolution
Some credit Louis Chevrolet, one of the co-founders of the Chevrolet company, for the design. Many see the Chevrolet bowtie as an interpretation of the Swiss cross. Others credit William Durant, the other Chevrolet co-founder for coming up with the design.
Regardless of who actually designed the Chevrolet bowtie, the actual Chevy symbol has not changed much since it first came in use in 1913. The basic shape and elements have remained more or less unaltered. The Chevy emblem colors and background elements have changed from time to time, however.
Instantly recognizable anywhere in the world, the Chevrolet logo has a long history of stability and trustworthiness. Be it the Silverado, Camaro, Impala, Classic Corvette, Cruze, or even the SS, all incarnations of the cars sport the same-shaped bowtie logo. The idea behind the always-present bowtie was to inspire tradition, consistency, reliability, and a recognizable image throughout the ages.
The few instances in which the front sticker changed still kept the classic bowtie, but they included it in the special logo. These special logos came in 1947 and in 1955, as part of the special Fleetline, Fleetmaster, Stylemaster, Bel Air, and Nomad models.
The Chevrolet logo cross or bowtie consists of two thick stripes that form a cross. The vertical stripe is almost square, while the horizontal stripe has a slight tilt, to make the logo somewhat more dynamic.
Currently, the company’s colors are yellow, gold, silver, and black. Gold and silver are used as the main colors, while the yellow and black are there for shading purposes. Using the same color scheme since 2000, the newer Chevrolet logos are meant to symbolize originality, strength, quality, tradition, enthusiasm, and grace.
Before the ‘00s, the logo used to feature mostly black, white, gray, and blue colors, as those were the popular car brand color schemes of the time. The classic Chevrolet emblem colors have always had a way of integrating well with almost any color scheme.
There are many theories in regards to the origins of the bowtie emblem. One version of the Chevrolet logo story says that William Durant, who had a passion for logo design, was inspired by a wallpaper design he saw while vacationing in France. His wife, however, claims the inspiration came from a design he saw in a newspaper while on holiday in Virginia.
Chevrolet historian Ken Kaufman actually managed to track down the newspaper Durant was likely reading at the time. And in that newspaper Kaufman noted an ad for the Coalettes coal company that bore a striking resemblance to the Chevrolet logo.
The final theory surrounding the creation of the Chevrolet logo font and the Chevrolet logo itself is that Louis Chevrolet designed them himself. According to the story, the Swiss-born American sports car driver designed the logo while nostalgically thinking of his home and of the Swiss flag.
One of the most interesting things about the company, other than the long history of the logo, is that was founded by William C. Durant. It was one of the three companies founded by the man in 1911, along with General Motors and Frigidaire. He would go on to found two more companies the following year.
After being fired by General Motors, his own company, Durant went and founded Chevrolet with Louis Chevrolet. The company did so well, in fact, that by 1915 Chevrolet managed to buy out GM and in an ironic twist of fate, to take over the company.
One of the most famous car brands in the world, Chevrolet has become synonymous with success and quality over its long history. The Chevrolet logo – the cross, the bowtie, or the butterfly, depending on whom you ask – is one of the most recognizable emblems in the world, and if the numbers are correct, it will be for a long time to come.