The first Volkswagen logo reflects its birth as the "people's car" that Adolf Hitler wanted to motorize the citizens of Nazi Germany.
The initials of the words Volks and Wagen are arranged inside a circle, one above the other, and embedded in a cogwheel whose perimeter develops a graphic theme that is a reinterpretation of the swastika. The original design is from Reimspiess, who will then sign the Beetle engine design.
The original logo lasted only two years and changed during the period of World War II. References to the cross disappear, but the cogwheel remains. In this way, the design composed of the V and the W becomes larger and the proportions become similar to those of today.
The peculiarity of this logo is that it is found practically only in military vehicles, given the war conversion of all production during the conflict.
The one that goes from the postwar period to the beginning of the '60s is the longest-running Volkswagen logo. It lasted 15 years and became famous not only with the Beetle, but also with the different T1 vans.
The cogwheel disappears and the design of the letters widens. It is an immediately recognizable logo, simple and very proportionate.
This logo is the only one in the history of Volkswagen that has a square shape.
In these years, the Wolfsburg firm opened up to international markets, especially North America, and a new design was necessary to maintain a more global image.
At the end of the '60s, the logo changed again and the square part was lost... never to return.
The new design was very similar to the postwar one, but is thinner. In addition, the colors are no longer black and white; the blue used in this logo appears to this day. It is the most essential and minimalist logo in the history of Volkswagen. Until recently, at least.
The '60s passed, the '70s arrived and, with them, the revolution of the K70, Golf, and Passat. Volkswagen began to grow exponentially and also looked towards China. A new logo was needed to reaffirm that maturity.
The basic graphic design remains the same and the two-dimensionality does not change. Instead, the colors are inverted, with blue as the background and white in the letters, while adopting a double frame.
In the next 11 years, the Volkswagen logo changes three times. The first version, which lasted until 1995, is the simplest of all: it is practically the same logo used between 1945 and 1960, but with the light blue color instead of black.
From 1995 to 2000, however, it returned to the graphics of the '70s and '80s, but with slightly different proportions and colors, which change very little, as confirmed by the coexistence of two almost equal logos during the last year of the millennium.
With the third millennium comes three-dimensionality, with a new logo that seems to rest on a kind of round platform.
The blue becomes a little less intense, especially in the second version, which lasts only two years, from 2010 to 2012, while the proportions are now fixed.
The next logo, the one now being replaced, is basically an even more three-dimensional version, and slightly smaller than the previous one.
This is ultimate evolution of a concept that's now changing to accompany Volkswagen in a new era of electric mobility.
2019 - ?
Here it is, the new Volkswagen logo and the ninth since 1937. It's a marked departure from the last two logos, eschewing all dimension for a simple, flat, two-dimensional design.
VW showed off the new logo design at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show, where it was displayed in this white-on-blue combination, as well as blue-on-white and black-on-white.
12 / 12