23 April 2013

BMW Logo Origin Myth Debunked

When searching for the origins of BMW's logo you will no doubt come across the common myth that it was based on the propellers/ air screws of their aircraft (the white part of the logo) cutting through the sky (the blue part of the logo).

We say myth because since this presumption, which originated from a 1929 BMW aircraft magazine that illustrated two planes with the logo placed in the centre of their propellers, BMW recorded and published the following video to explain the actual origins of its logo:

So the first documented instance of the logo was actually in BMW's archives dated 1918 - way before the magazine was printed and was not based on propeller blades cutting through the sky.

Instead the BMW logo was actually based on the RAPP's original logo (the aircraft manufacturing company that eventually became BMW) alongside the national blue and white colours of Bavaria. When you see the two logos side by side you can identify the similarities in letter spacing and design.

Now if someone talks to you about the origins of BMW's logo and how it was based on the 1929 publication you can correct them. To add extra trivia you can also tell them it didn't first appear on a road vehicle until 1923 on BMW's R32.

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