Even before the pandemic happened, Japanese automaker Nissan had been reeling from the blows dealt by the Carlos Ghosn corporate scandal. And with the whole world struggling to cope with a new normal, now would seem like the perfect time to push the restart button. Nissan is doing it by introducing a new brand logo, though the company claims that work on the logo change commenced as early as “the summer of 2017.”
This new logo effectively retires the outgoing one, which had been around for two decades. Nissan felt it needed to freshen up its brand image to reflect the global shift to the digital era. The Yokohama-based vehicle manufacturer joins BMW in tweaking its corporate symbol in 2020.
“The new Nissan logo communicates our guiding message, carried over from past iterations: If you have a strong, determined belief, it can even penetrate the sun,” says Tsutomu Matsuo, deputy general manager of Nissan’s advanced design department, in a press statement. “At Nissan, this strong belief in the power of achievement has never wavered and can be seen in our pioneering efforts in electrification, driver assistance and digital connectivity. Our logo has to convey all of this in just a glance, to show our commitment to our customers, employees and society.”
Explaining the new logo’s design process, Nissan shares:
The team needed to consider several variables, including an early decision for the logo to be illuminated on upcoming all-electric models. This presented technical challenges, such as gauging the thickness of the logo’s outline to ensure a crisp impression when lit, and of course compliance with government regulations for illuminated elements on cars. The logo also needed to make a strong impression when not illuminated, such as when it appeared digitally or on paper.
After countless sketches and several mock-ups, the result was a logo with a two-dimensional impression. Looking more designed than manufactured, it has the flexibility to live in multiple worlds. The process started in 3D and then developed in 2D: The illuminated brand badge was drafted first, pulling the illuminated area out to represent the brand in 2D form.
Nissan will start rolling out the new logo this month in its communication materials and media platforms. The just-unveiled Ariya all-electric crossover SUV is the first vehicle model to wear the badge. Nissan says a total of 20 LEDs will illuminate the logo when used on EVs, supposedly corresponding to the exact number of years between logo changes.
Here’s hoping Nissan the very best as it attempts to turn a new leaf in its storied history.