Škoda is a brand of car designing and manufacturing company, that was established in 1895 in the Czech Republic. Since 2000 the brand is a part of the Volkswagen Group and operates in more than 100 countries across the globe.
Meaning and history
Škoda has a very long and rich history as a company, and its visual identity evolution is a perfect reflection of all the brand’s milestones.
Škoda was founded in 1985 by two cyclists, Vaclav Layton and Vaclav Klement. In the first years, the company Salvia was manufacturing bicycles, then decided to add motors and in 1899 the company was renamed to Laurin & Klement and started producing motorbikes.
The company started trying itself in a car manufacturing and 1925 merged with Pizen Skodovka Co and became a Škoda company, producing vehicles, engines and agricultural machinery.
1895 – 1905
The first logo of the company was a celebration of its name, Slavia, in which all capital letters were executed in an elegant fine typeface and placed diagonally inside a wheel.
The circle of the wheel was framed with lime leaves, which symbolizes the Slavic nations. The 1895 logo also featured the names of the company founders.
1905 – 1925
The 1905 logo was composed of the founders’ initials enclosed in a circle with laurel leaves around its perimeter. The color palette was burgundy and gold, which was a symbol of luxury, elegance, and victory. The logo was a part of the brand’s visual identity until 1925, then it was replaced by two options design in the same year.
1925 – 1933
After the company got its new name, Škoda, one of the options for the new logo was based on the previous design. It was a deep blue oval with gold laurel framing and gold wordmark in an elegant handwritten typeface.
1925 – 1993
The more significant design was created in the same year. The five-feathered arrow in blue color, placed inside a blue circle was designed by Tomas Maglic.
It was a stylized drawing of the Indian feather hat and an arrow. The idea of Tomas Maglic was to reflect the company’s look into the future and its continuous movement.
The wordmark in a handwritten typeface was placed inside the circle and under the arrow.
1993 – 1999
After the acquisition of Škoda by Volkswagen, the brand’s logo was redesigned, but the idea remained.
The main change touched the color palette, which was switched from blue to green, to celebrate life, energy, and power. The circle itself was enlarged, to make enough space for a new wordmark “Škoda Auto”.
1999 – 2011
In 1999 the Škoda logo became brighter and stronger due to the use of black color in its palette. The contrast of black with green and silver made the logo stand out and celebrated the style and dynamics.
The black color is a symbol of the brand’s traditions and heritage, while green is a representation of the new life and environmentally-centered approach of Škoda.
2011 – 2016
The redesign of 2011 made the Škoda logo simplistic and more stylish. It is now composed of a circle with a thin silver outline, with a green iconic symbol placed inside on a white background. The wordmark is located above the circle and features black bold lettering.
2016 – Today
The last modification of the Škoda logo was held in 2016. It made the emblem more three-dimensional and sleek, and the wordmark typeface became more confident and strong. The lettering is now placed under the emblem.
The famous Škoda emblem features an abstract image of a winged arrow, enclosed in a circle. According to the legend, it was created in the 1920s by Tomas Maglic, who got inspired by the portrait of a Native American man.
The arrow in the Škoda logo symbolizes speed and targeted approach, the wings are a celebration of freedom and flight. This is a very meaningful logo for the brand, which values traditional and heritage.
The color palette of the Škoda logo is silver, white and green, which represents the company’s energy, progressive thinking, and stability.
However, before the iconic emblem was created, Škoda had undergone several logo redesigns.