Rolls Royce was originally founded by Charles Stewart Rolls and Sir Frederick Henry Royce in 1906. The partners developed vehicles known for their powerful engines, quality workmanship, and beautiful designs. The legacy of Rolls Royce has endured for over a century. They are still seen as one of the premiere manufacturers for luxury vehicles. Much like the spirit of the Rolls Royce car brand, the Rolls Royce logo has not changed much through its century long history.
Rolls Royce Logo Design Elements
The Rolls Royce logo is relatively simple. It features two letters “R” standing at a slight angle from one another, to create the illusion of perspective. The letters are encased in a rectangle with rounded corners. The words Rolls and Royce are displayed at the top and bottom of the logo respectively. The Rolls Roys logo is usually rendered in white on blue, or black on white. The black and white version of the Rolls Royce logo is usually displayed on the cars themselves, while the blue and white version appears mostly in media.
Changes and Evolution
The Rolls Royce logo history stands out from other logos because it has not changed since the brand’s inception. It is sometimes slightly altered, but the company’s main logo remains the same.
Officially, the shape of the logo always consists of the rectangle with the interior words and monogram. However, since the early years of Rolls Royce logo history, the company sometimes only uses the double R monogram when they want a more simplified version of their logo. For example, the headrests in the interior of a Rolls Royce just have the interlinked R’s from the middle of the logo without the surrounding lines and rectangles.
The color of the basic logo is blue. This classic shade is often used in color psychology to represent trustworthiness, quality, and elegance. When the logo is stamped into silver metal for the hood of a vehicle, it takes on an industrial appearance without its normal blue shade. Initially, the Rolls Royce logo appeared in red. However, Royce noticed the color red tendend to clash with some Rolls Royce car colors. Therefore, they opted for the neutral black color on cars. The color of the Rolls Royce logo was changed shortly after the death of Henry Royce, in 1934.
Though the logo featured in the Rolls Royce logo design may share some similarities with other classic fonts, it is completely original. The lettering used for both R’s and the phrases, “Rolls” and “Royce” remain completely unchanged. Even when the coloring and shape are slightly altered, the custom Rolls Royce font is always used.
The Rolls Royce logo design is heavily influenced by Art Deco and Art Nouveau design. These fields of design were originally developed in the early 1900s, when Rolls Royce was getting its start. They featured simple lines, curves, and geometric designs inspired by classical Greek and Egyptian art. Though this type of design was only trendy until around the 1930s, Rolls Royce chose to keep the same logo instead of updating it. They wanted to create a sense of timeless elegance surrounding their brand. Fortunately, the original logo was bold, streamlined, and simple, just like the company’s automobiles. This is why it has managed to avoid looking dated over the years. Its simple lines and bold monogram have been mimicked by many other later competitors in the luxury car market, as seen in the Bugatti logo.
Just as iconic as the Rolls Royce logo, the Rolls Royce hood ornament, dubbed “The Spirit of Ecstasy” became part of each Rolls Royce car desing in the early 1920s.
The initial sculpture was created by Charles Sykes for the Silver Ghost owned by Lord Montagu. The model used for the initial sculpture was Eleanor Velasco Thornton, a young secretary and the lover of Lord Montagu. Since Lord Montagu was married, and Miss Thornton was beneath his status, the two could never be married. However, in spite of these obstacles, the two were partners for the next decade.
To celebrate their love, Montague commissioned a unique hood ornament, representing Thornton with a finger pressed against her lips, to symbolize their secret love. This sculpture was later updated by Sykes and became “The Spirit of Ecstasy.”
The unchanging Rolls Royce logo and accompanying hood ornament help to make the company’s cars instantly recognizable. Even people who know nothing about automobiles can tell that a car with the double R logo is a finely engineered luxury product. The company’s elegant, simple design has truly stood the test of time.