Chrysler is the smallest of the Big Three that control the US auto market. It is 100% owned by the Italian concern Fiat. The deal was completed in 2014; simultaneously, the firm was renamed Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. The change in ownership and name did not affect the automaker’s major brands, including Jeep, Dodge, RAM, and subsidiary Chrysler.
Meaning and History
What is Chrysler?
This is the representative of the Big Three of the US automakers. Its full name is Stellantis, North America. There is also the Chrysler trademark, under which minivans and cars are produced.
Walter Chrysler was a great entrepreneur. He knew what he needed to do to create a promising car company and take it to the top in a short time. The secret to his success is simple: some of the greatest engineers, big start-up capital, and a promising business idea. Having assembled the dream team, Walter took action. He founded Chrysler in 1925, and the first car of this brand entered the market even earlier – in 1924. The debut vehicle was released at the Maxwell Motor Company plant.
New cars compete with Lincoln Ford and Cadillac GM – the best models in the luxury class. The manufacturer’s concept was to make inexpensive yet luxurious and innovative cars. At the same time, he needed his symbol, which could be associated with a high-end brand. The old Chrysler identity has not been forgotten, even though this company has long been part of Fiat and is called FCA. Almost all of the past logos have been iconic, especially the famous Pentastar pentagon.
Brand names were frequently updated: sometimes due to reorganization (with expansion and change of ownership), and sometimes for marketing purposes, in the late 1990s. The automaker found its lettering style and began to stick with it, experimenting with only minor details and graphic elements.
1925 – 1955
When Walter Chrysler founded the car company, he asked one of the engineers to help him design the logo. Oliver Clark knew how to draw and knew about design, so he took up the task with enthusiasm. He created one of Chrysler’s most iconic marks, around wax seal depicting the brand’s name across the transverse stripe.
The blue rectangle that contained the inscription was stylized as a ribbon. It wrapped around a golden circle, and its ends peeped out from the lower right corner. There were two lightning bolts at the top and bottom of the diagonal strip, one on each side. Few people know, but these zigzags were stylized “Z” letters. They represented the Zeder model car. It was expected that its prototype would be the first Chrysler car, but the company was forced to sell its development due to unforeseen circumstances. According to another version, lightning personified the power of engines.
The logo mimicked a real wax seal that was used at government fairs as an award. It is a symbol of the manufacturer’s reliability, honesty, and confirmation of the quality of his vehicles. The original symbol fell out of use in 1954 and was forgotten for several decades until the company decided to return to its origins.
1955 – 1962
In the middle of the 20th century, an emblem appeared: two “boomerangs” in red and black. They had different proportions: one was wider and shorter, and the other was narrower and longer. Judging by the intersections, the black “boomerang” was on top of the red one. The Dodge brand used the same logo.
1962 – 1993
In 1962, marketing firm Lippincott & Margulies designed the famous Pentastar symbol for Chrysler. It is known to have been a corporate logo and, on rare occasions, adorned the hoods of cars. It has never been used on radiator grilles. This emblem was chosen from 800 others. It was invented by Robert Stanley, a supporter of classics and stability. He wanted to make a sign that would combine simplicity, style, and dynamics.
All his ideas were embodied in a blue pentagon with a graceful star inside. The rays divided the large geometrical figure into five small triangles directed towards the center’s top corners. Many people mistakenly believe that the Pentastar facets represent specific brands: Dodge Trucks, Dodge, Plymouth, Imperial, and Chrysler. This is not the case – the star was added to create the visual illusion of movement and dilute the strict shape of the polygon. And the company had many more brands.
Such misconceptions are associated with Bob Hope’s corporate logo in his popular show, placing the name of a car brand in front of each beam. This program came out in 1962, shortly after the emergence of Pentastar and its publication in promotional materials. The official version of the emblem was complemented only by the black “CHRYSLER” lettering at the bottom.
1993 – 2009
The original logo, which disappeared in 1955, returned triumphantly in the early 1990s. The company again began to use a wax seal with tape to confirm the high reliability and quality of the machines.
1995 – 1998
Simultaneously with the seal emblem, the word mark with the inscription “CHRYSLER” was relevant. The designers chose a futuristic sans-serif font for the corporation’s name. The letters were flattened, with both “Rs” missing portions of the strokes in the upper right corner.
1998 – 2010
At the end of 1998, the famous seal was placed inside the long wings, which contained three “feathers,” each on the right and left. They have been outlined with a gray line. The word “CHRYSLER” was at the top. The developers changed the shape of the letters, making them look like the lettering font under Pentastar.
2010 – present
The next redesign was carried out when the Italian concern Fiat bought out part of Chrysler’s shares. The logo lost its traditional wax seal – it was replaced by the company name, written inside the blue nameplate. It has been integrated into the center of the fenders, which are sleeker and have a metallic gradient. The emblem now resembles the Aston Martin brand name with a similar structure. At the top, as in the previous version, is the brand name. The word turned light gray. The public learned about the change in the identity at the end of 2009 because the automaker applied to register a new trademark in the fall.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
The fenders featured on the latest logos are an important historical legacy for Chrysler, along with the wax seal. They were developed by the same person – engineer Oliver Clark. Previously, the winged element was used only as a figurine of a radiator and personified the ancient Roman god Mercury, who could develop great speed. It became a part of the logo very recently when the designers combined two original corporate symbols.
Most of the corporate word marks were created from individual fonts. In the latest version, the lettering “CHRYSLER” looks elegant, even though the proportions of the letters are out of order.
The emblem imitates a metal radiator figure. For this, the designers used several shades of gray and silver, combining them using a gradient. The company name is inscribed on a dark blue background. This color connects the modern design with the ribbon that was depicted on the original logo.