New Ford vehicles have come a long way since the original releases of the Model T and Model A. As a whole, Ford Motor Company has stood the test of time, and for good reason. Nowadays, it seems as if over half of the vehicles on American roads are sporting the automaker’s iconic blue oval Ford logo, so there’s no doubt that the car manufacturer is popular.
The Ford emblem is largely recognized among the population, but not near as many people know the true history of the Ford logo. It’s gone through multiple redesigns, and it looks far different from the original Ford logo that Henry Ford used when he started it all. Let’s take a look back at the different logo designs the car brand has been through over the years.
The History of the Ford Logo
The very first logo design was likely the most unique of the bunch. Introduced in 1903, the shape of the logo was a black circle, but it featured a vintage art nouveau border and had “Ford Motor Co. Detroit, Mich.” (Ford is now headquartered in Dearborn, Michigan) displayed in the center with white color lettering. It was easily the most complex version of the logo considering the new designs that followed this one.
They made a significant change in 1907, and in a sense, simplified the design. They ditched all the artistic borders, and changed the long name to only display “Ford,” sporting the style of Henry Ford’s signature. With a white backdrop, the Ford script was written in black. By 1912, they took that same design and encapsulated it in an oval, which was the very start of the oval logo theme that they stuck with in the long run. Ford Motor Company Limited of Great Britain actually used the oval logo since 1907, and it was so popular that it represented all Ford U.K. cars.
1927 marked another redesign year, with the main change including using a dark blue color for the background, but maintaining the white Ford script lettering. The oval shape was also modified slightly and appears much rounder than today’s Ford oval. They stuck with the same general design for quite some time after this until 1957, when the logo took on somewhat of an oddball shape.
It was still an oval, kind of, but it more so resembled a lemon. At this time, the logo was only used on company communications, and it did match Ford’s styling. 1976 marked the next revision year, and Ford thankfully ditched the lemon design for a normal oval and a cleaner signature. This one looks extremely similar to the blue oval logo used today, however, in 2003 for Ford’s 100th anniversary, the logo saw a gradient white tint added with cool 3D shading and was titled the Centennial Blue Oval.
Rejected Ford Emblems
Now, car logos can have a serious impact on the brand name, so they did have a few different designs that got turned down in the last century. One of those was back in 1912, when the white signature logo was placed in front of a blue winged pyramid. The idea was to show the product’s speed, grace, and stability, but Henry Ford was not a fan, and it was promptly removed.
Another example was in 1966 when Henry Ford II hired Paul Rand to come up with a new logo design. It was an interesting look, and somewhat ridded the signature design, but in the end, it was found to be too radical of a change before being rejected.
Ford cars and trucks are everywhere today, and it never hurts to learn a bit about the largest auto manufacturers out there. Next time you head to your local car meet, go check out some of the classic Ford Mustangs and see which Ford logo they are rocking!
This post was originally published on November 11, 2020.