"Iconic" is a word that is thrown around far too often in the automotive world, but after 100 years and dozens of colors and text styles, the lasting importance and brand symbol of the Chevy bowtie emblem is a sure thing.
As the bowtie evolved over the ten decades, its transformations were barely noticeable versus the complete revolution in transport they adorned - from the first Chevy ’Classic Six’ model to today’s industrial heavy-hitter with more than 50 global model lines.
Legibility and pronunciation of this French name were a real problem versus monosyllabic "Fords " across the street.
Soon, a baby blue bowtie logo appeared along with Chevrolet written in all caps in 1913, but the exact origins of this bowtie are unknown.
What we do know is that the Chevy bowtie instantly means cars.
Along with Ford , Coca Cola and General Electric, the emblem of the Chevrolet lineup is a globally-recognized symbol of freedom, prestige and mobility.
Logo changes are often fraught with peril for the companies who fail to understand the symbol’s importance to their most loyal consumers. Just a brief look back shows disastrous results followed when Gap Inc. tried to remodel their emblem, or the huge drop in real-life sales following Tropicana’s disastrous package redesign.
With the new 2014 Cadillac logo (without the wreath!) in place on the Elmiraj Concept , here’s a look back at the evolution of the Chevrolet bowtie over the Chevrolet bowtie over the last hundred years.
Click past the jump for the full Chevy’s BowTie Emblem Turns 100, Reflects On Badge’s Evolution article - to find out the most likely source of the bowtie emblem.
Updated 10/14/2013: This article has been updated with Chevy’s latest skinny emblem, which the original article did not highlight as the new bowtie in use since 2010.