Mitsubishi’s logo is simple in a way that’s hard to understand. With minimal elements and basic colors, it shouldn’t seem special. Somehow, though, it immediately catches the eye and draws in the interest of the consumer. It’s minimalist to be sure, but not in a way that hides the company. Instead, the logo provides an image that simply works on a consumer level. Taking a look at how the Mitsubishi logo has evolved can say quite a bit about why such logos work in the marketplace.
Mitsubishi Logo Design Elements
The Mitsubishi logo is famously known as the three-diamond logo, though the modern iteration of the shape is actually three diamonds. The logo is a riff on a much older logo, but it actually pays off in some unique ways during the modern era. It’s a logo that certainly stands out as unique, but the use of the diamond shapes does help to ensure that the logo seems to stand for high quality.
The logo makes use of a deep red color as well, one that stands out in a sea of silver car badges. This makes Mitsubishi products easy to identify on the road and in stores. The logo also uses a custom font, helping to ensure that one can easily pick out something that’s coming from the company just by seeing the shape of the letters. It’s a fantastic piece of design work that really ties together the company’s image.
Changes and Evolution
The original Mitsubishi logo was incredibly close to today’s logo. The triple diamond pattern has been in play since the 1870s, but initially in a much thinner form. It’s a definite move towards modernity with the larger diamond shapes, but the individual shape played an important function as a combination of two different house symbols in Japan. The larger diamond shapes, on the other hand, play much better as a symbol on a vehicle as they are both easier to see and much easier to identify at a distance.
Mitsubishi and red have always gone together, at least internationally. Again, this is likely a nod towards the necessity of making automotive designs easy to see at a distance. It should be noted, though, that the company frequently uses blue in its wordmark – especially in its native market. This helps this helps to provide a unified image within Asia, one that is as much about the company’s electrical manufacturing as it is about automobiles and motorcycles. As such, the split in wordmark color does make sense even if it stands out from the logo itself.
The font choice for Mitsubishi is interesting, in that it’s not the original font of the company. As one might expect, the original font uses Japanese characters rather than English characters. As such, the move towards international markets in the 1960s necesstitated a change in how the company’s wordmark would be viewed. The simple, custom lettering helps consumers to identify the company’s official products without causing any difficulty in reading the name. It’s a solid way to make sure that the company stands out without being too difficult for consumers.
The primary influence on the Mitsubishi logo is actually well-documented. It is a version of the Tsukomo Shokai shipping company’s flag. This predecessor to the modern Mitsubishi company actually took its own inspiration from the crests of two Japanese houses, which helped to pay tribute to the contributions of both at the same time.
Mitsubishi’s logo definitely influenced many other Japanese motor vehicle makers. You can see elements of the design in Honda and Toyota’s simplicity, for example. The logo’s use of simple shapes and colors also extended internationally, with many car brands using something similar until moving on to more updated designs. Even so, the simplicity of the logo did help to contribute to the change in how vehicle badges would be designed across the world.
- The predecessor of the Mitsubishi company was founded in the 1870s.
- Mitsubishi is made up of two words – Mitsu (three) and hishi (chestnut).
- Mitsubishi products are sold in over 140 nations.
- The modern Mitsubishi company started life as a steel supplier to the Japanese navy.
- Mitsubishi introduced Japan’s first four-wheel-drive car in 1936.
The Mitsubishi logo is a great update on a truly classic design. It took what worked from the distant past and updated it in a way that made it function in a modern era. It is a prime example of solid modernization and one form which other logo designers can learn when updating their own products. If you want to learn how to take a design from the past and bring it to the present, the three diamonds will help you.