Infographic Category Business

A Visual History Of Major Automaker Logos (1900-Present)

By | source:Here Apr 7th, 2022

Car company logos are iconic. They are meant to represent everything an automaker stands for. Whether it be luxury, dependability, affordability, or performance. Here is a visual history of Automaker logos.


The first Cadillac logo was a stylized version of a French coat of arms, which the Cadillac family adopted as their own. It stood for their home region in France and featured three lions. The coat of arms also appeared on the Cadillac family crest.

However, it wasn’t until 1917 that the logo made its debut on a car. And this version looked slightly different than the original coat of arms. The lion heads were removed and replaced with laurel wreaths (an ancient symbol of victory).

During WWII, Cadillac replaced the wreaths with a pair of wings because metal was needed to assist the war effort.

In 1957, Cadillac’s crest changed once again to a horizontal design featuring two lions flanking a central crest. It’s actually similar to the original Cadillac family seal, minus the lions’ faces. This would be Cadillac’s last logo redesign until 1999 when they introduced their current logo.


The Audi logo has changed numerous times over the years. They say that there are no original ideas, but in the case of Audi, that’s not true.

Audi’s first logo was based on the German word for “eight,” which is Einhundert (“one hundred”). It was used from 1910 to 1927 and was designed by Ferdinand Porsche, an engineer who specialized in car design. In 1927, Audi changed their logo to a simple four-pointed star, as it still is today.

Audi’s next logo was also a simple star and was used from 1931 to 1989. It was a prominent feature during the 1930s and 1940s and during World War II it served as Germany’s national flag.

Audi’s current logo uses a stylized version of the company name without any lettering around it; it uses two bright blue arcs on top of three interlocking rings, evoking the shape of a circle with its points outward.


The Mazda logo has undergone many changes over the years.

The first logo from 1903 is a simple oval that is still used today in conjunction with variations of the company’s current logo.

In the early 1920’s, a new logo was designed to be more modern and to stand out among its competitors. This design consisted of a large upward-pointing arrow on a white field with three blue horizontal lines on each side. It was also used in association with its current logo.

From 1952-1956, Japanese cartoonist Eiji Tsuburaya designed a new logo for Mazda in response to the growing popularity of American cars in Japan at the time. The company’s name was written in katakana (Japanese phonetic writing) as “???” under the arrow. The two biggest differences were that the company name was centered in the design and that it had no arrows at all.

When Ford Motor Company purchased a controlling interest in Mazda, the original blue lines were changed to red and gray for the newly formed Mazda Motor Corporation. This design lasted until 1972 when Mazda switched to using two overlapping arrows as its corporate symbol, also then incorporating it into their vehicles and advertisements as well as their showrooms and dealer floors around Japan.


Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG)

Mercedes-Benz began as Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft, which was founded in 1890. The first logo of this company was a three-pointed star, which symbolized the company’s dominance in land, sea, and air. The three points also represented the three main geographic areas that its diesel engines were used: Europe, Africa, and America.

Daimler-Benz AG

In 1926, DMG merged with Benz & Cie to become Daimler-Benz AG. This is when the name “Mercedes” came into play. That year, Mercedes was their most popular model, so they decided to add it to their logo. It’s also around this time that the laurel wreath was added as a design element.

The Mercedes-Benz Logo Today

Nowadays, the Mercedes logo still has the three points for land, sea, and air dominance. The laurel wreath design is a nod to the early 1900s when racing became a popular sport.


The Lincoln Motor Company, which is headquartered in Dearborn, Michigan, was founded in 1917. Since then the company has had several logo changes.


The first logo of the company was a humble one. It consisted of the founder’s name with a large serif font and the word “Motor Company” written beneath in a smaller font. It remained like this for 15 years until 1932.


In 1933, the company’s logo received its first major change. The new logo featured a sleek black font with an art deco style, stylized to look similar to an automobile grill. This was a more elegant and stylish design that better reflected the luxury cars they produced than their original logo did. This logo remained unchanged until 1940.


After seven years with the same logo, in 1940 Lincoln introduced a new design that would remain largely unchanged for 36 years! This time it was based on a coat of arms with three diagonal stripes representing speed and dynamism and two blue stripes on top representing loyalty. In 1956 two small stars were added to the crest to symbolize quality and craftsmanship. Finally, in 1976 this iconic design was updated once more to make it appear sle


BMW has always had a logo that’s related to airplane propellers, and it’s gone through various iterations and changes since the company was founded in 1917. In the beginning, they had a logo that was simply a black-and-white outline of a gray propeller on a circular field, but now they have an abstract white and blue one with a black circle around it.

This is because at first they focused on making airplane engines, but later they started making cars. They kept the logo because they thought it would be good publicity to keep using the same one as their parent company, Rapp Motorenwerke, which made airplane engines before World War I.

The BMW logo isn’t just any old propeller logo—it’s an image of one that came from a real plane called “Sperber Junior” (Sparrowhawk), which was used during World War II by Luftwaffe fighter pilots to shoot down Allied aircrafts.

They changed their logo in 1917 when they were founded as Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG (BFW). They changed it again when they became Bayerische Motoren Werke GmbH after merging with another company called Rapp Motorenwerke in 1922; then yet again when they were