The founder of Honda dropped out at 16 to become an assistant auto mechanic. Without a special education, he began making parts for Toyota. In 1944 and 1945, two Soichiro Honda factories were destroyed: one was bombed, and the other collapsed in an earthquake. This forced him to sell the rest of the Toyota business and start a new business with the proceeds. Several people in a small hut were manually assembling motorized bicycles. Then the aspiring entrepreneur created Honda Motor Co., Ltd., which eventually became the largest motorcycle manufacturer. The first Honda car appeared in 1963.
Meaning and History
The Japanese company is engaged in the manufacture of motorcycles and cars, and these areas have different logos. The motorcycle brand can be recognized by the wings of the goddess of victory Nike and the automotive brand by the stylized letter “H.” Their symbolism is different because they are two different subsidiaries. And the multinational corporation that owns them uses mainly the wordmark with the inscription “HONDA.”
1961 – 1969
The “H” badge was first seen on the hood of the T360 mini pickup. It went on sale in 1963.
1969 – 1981
Two years after the debut of the N360 city car, the company updated the logo. As a result, the letter became white and narrow. And she also had a foundation: a dark isosceles trapezoid.
1981 – 2000
In 1981, Honda invented the world’s first GPS-like navigation system. It entered the US market around the same time. These events coincided with the modernization of the logo. The “H” is now thin and black. The developers have placed it in a white trapezoidal shape with rounded corners. The brand’s name appeared at the bottom, written in branded bold type with large rectangular serifs.
2000 – present
The new logo differs from the old one only by the enlarged letter “H” in the trapezoid frame. Car enthusiasts first saw this version at the presentation of the Honda Civic in 2000.
The Honda brand name has always looked like a capital “H,” drawn in a recognizable and unique style. This is the first letter from the name of the company and the surname of its creator. In the emblem, the top of the “H” is widened, and the bottom is tapered, so it looks like a car part. For many, such a symbol is associated with a humanoid figure that stretches out its arms to the sky. Thanks to its simple form, the iconic badge is used on the bonnet and the steering wheel or small elements (such as buttons).
Despite its popularity, the stylized “H” does not adorn all Honda cars. In particular, Acura’s luxury sports cars, sedans, and crossovers have the letter “A” in their logo, similar to a caliper conceived by the developers. Nevertheless, the emblem with “H” is considered the most successful design solution.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
In the full version, the famous graphic sign is supplemented with the word “HONDA.” The text uses a simple font owned by the car company. Capital letters, bold, flattened at the top, with large rectangular serifs. If you look closely, you can see that the typeface changed a bit in 2000. The typographers rounded off all the corners, making the characters streamlined. This redesign had little or no effect on the lettering’s perception, but the company executives found it necessary.
Advertising materials often feature a black and white logo. It has other color versions that adorn Honda vehicles. For example, the regular Civic lineup has all the emblems, either black or silver. On the Civic Type R, they are mostly red. Perhaps this is because Soichiro Honda was very fond of red clothes and even wore red business shirts and ties. This color also reminds me of when the company’s sports cars first took part in the Formula 1 competition.