The curtain has been raised on “New Volkswagen“: On the first press day of the IAA International Motor Show in Frankfurt, the Volkswagen brand has unveiled its new logo and its new brand design. This world premiere marks the start of a new era for Volkswagen, accompanied by the presentation of the full-electric ID.31 at the same time. Volkswagen’s future is electric, fully connected and has a neutral carbon balance. With its new brand design, VW has created a uniform global 360° brand experience which is more modern and more authentic. The new Volkswagen logo with its flat two-dimensional design is clearer and has been reduced to its essential elements. The brand design and the logo aim for high flexibility and are intended for digital applications. The realignment of Volkswagen’s brand design is one of the world’s largest rebranding campaigns. The changeover to the new brand design is due to be completed by mid-2020.
“The new brand design marks the start of the new era for Volkswagen,” says Jürgen Stackmann, Member of the Brand Board of Management responsible for Sales, Marketing and After-Sales. “By formulating new content and with new products, the brand is undergoing a fundamental transformation towards a future with a neutral emission balance for everyone. Now is the right time to make the new attitude of our brand visible to the outside world.”
“New Volkswagen” can be seen and experienced in the design of the vehicles, in customer contacts and in the brand presentation as a whole. The new brand design applies both to Volkswagen Passenger Cars and to Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. Volkswagen’s Chief Designer Klaus Bischoff played a key role in the development of the new corporate identity. “In the new brand design, we have created an authentic communications platform for the emotional presentation of e-mobility. We are showing the Volkswagen of the future under the motto of “digital first” and “no filter”.
Jochen Sengpiehl, Chief Marketing Officer of Volkswagen, explains: “We have created a new holistic global brand experience on all channels and across all touch points. As a general principle, the aim in future will not be to show a perfect advertising world. In our presentation, we want to become more human and more lively, to adopt the customer’s perspective to a greater extent and to tell authentic stories.”
The strategic foundations for the new brand design were not laid by external agencies but by a joint team of Volkswagen Design and Marketing. The design was implemented with the full integration of all departments of the company in the record time of nine months using a powerhouse concept developed by Volkswagen especially for this purpose. A total of 19 internal teams and 17 external agencies were involved in the project. The international roll-out of the new brand design will begin at the IAA Frankfurt International Motor Show. The starting signal will be given when the new logo starts to shine out from the high-rise building at company headquarters in Wolfsburg at the same time as the Volkswagen Group evening. The global changeover is to be implemented using a cost-optimized, resource-conserving approach. Initially, the brand’s locations and dealers in Europe will be changed over, followed by China in October. The changeover will then be implemented step-by-step in North and South America as well as the rest of the world from the beginning of 2020. The roll-out is to be completed by the middle of next year. Volkswagen’s rebranding is one of the largest projects of this type in the industry worldwide. All in all, 171 markets are concerned. At the 10,000 facilities of dealers and service partners throughout the world, about 70,000 logos will be replaced.
The symbol and trademark will be the new logo. This will be more modern, clearer and simpler. The logo will be reduced to its essential elements and presented with a new design that is flat and two-dimensional. It will allow more flexible use and will be outstandingly recognizable in digital media. To date, the logo has been blue and white. A new blue tone is now being added, allowing additional color variants. As the digital application with simple, user-friendly interfaces has become extremely important, the logo will be positioned flexibly with the new “moving frame” in the future.
Instead of a brand claim, Volkswagen will have a sound logo for the first time. This will make also make the Volkswagen brand distinctive in acoustic terms, both in the vehicle and in communications.
The new visual language of the brand will be very different from that presented by Volkswagen to date – it will be bolder and more colorful. The focus will be on people. Volkswagen will no longer concentrate on perfectionism in vehicle photography. In future, the main objective will be to present realistic situations that customers can identify with.
As in the case of the vehicle, light will also play a key role in communications. Light is the new chromium. In future, the logo will be illuminated, on the vehicle, at the brand locations and at the dealerships.
At the dealerships too, the logo, the moving frame and light will play a key role, with a view to creating a pleasant atmosphere. In general, the cost to dealers will be kept as low as possible. In architectural terms, there will be no change to the interior of the dealerships.
For several decades, Volkswagen has used a male voice to present its vehicles and for advertising purposes. The brand is now to become female. On almost all markets, a woman with a warm, pleasant and confident voice will speak for Volkswagen.