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The Kia logo redesign is confusing even more people

Kia logo
Is this logo Kia, a new car company or the band Nine Inch Nails? Opinions differ. (Image credit: Kia)

It can sometimes take the world some time to adjust to a new logo, especially when it’s quite a dramatic redesign. Reactions were a little mixed on the new logo for car manufacturer Kia when it made its debut in January, with some people praising the brand for its overdue refresh, but others pointing out that it looked a little confusing 

While we weren't exactly rushing to add it to our list of the best logos of all time, we didn't think the redesign was too bad. But the only real test of a logo is time – so, now that the dust has settled more than six months on, what’s the verdict on Kia’s new logo? Well, it mostly seems that people are a bit confused.

Kia logo

The original rebrand announcement. Those are drones setting off fireworks.  (Image credit: Kia)

Take, for instance, the story of one Reddit user, who approached the r/nonmurdermysteries subreddit to ask if anyone had heard of this “KM Cars” brand they’d spotted a number of times. 

“I've seen hundreds of car brands and from what I can tell none are remotely related,” they said. Shortly afterwards, someone pointed out that they had probably actually seen the new Kia logo, and the original poster confirmed that this was indeed the case.

In a similar tale, one Twitter user recently posted a photo of a car logo he’d spotted in the wild, asking, “Can anybody tell me if this is a fake car logo or actually legit? If real, what car company does the badge belong to?” 

We’ll venture that you can probably guess which car company Twitter users determined the badge did, in fact, belong to.

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More Twitter users have fessed up to thinking that the Kia logo was an entirely new car company. Others have also pointed out that it resembles the iconic NIИ logo of the band Nine Inch Nails, which presumably wasn’t the company’s intention either. 

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The story of KM Cars on reddit was also picked up by a popular meme account, and the replies to their tweet give a sense of how people are responding to the redesign. 

“I spent many weeks of the [NBA] playoffs wondering what this company was with its logo on the court. It's a TERRIBLE logo,” said one reply. 

Back in January, Kia said that the logo was intended to convey a fresh start and a change of direction for the company. "The rhythmical, unbroken line of the logo conveys Kia's commitment to bringing moments of inspiration, while its symmetry demonstrates confidence," it said in a press release.

The company certainly kicked things off with a bang, announcing the relaunch at the start of this year with the kind of pomp and fanfare usually reserved for something like a royal birth or the end of World War II.

That redesign announcement broke the Guinness world record for the number of fireworks set off by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). So we can't even imagine what'll be involved for the next one.

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Jon Stapley

Jon is a freelance writer and journalist who covers photography, art, technology, and the intersection of all three. Interests include old film cameras, new digital gadgets, and pounding the pavements of London looking for fresh photo opportunities. If he finds any, he will let you know.