This year seems to be, among (many) other things, the year of the new car logo. From BMW to Nissan to Rolls Royce, automobile manufacturers have been updating their symbols left, right and centre. And now luxury car brand Maserati has revealed an updated logo, which will grace its brand new MC20 sports car.
The Italian company's big news last week was the launch of the car itself, but eagle-eyed fans noticed that the MC20 also carries the first update to Maserati's 'trident' logo since 2005. Gone is the lightning bolt striking across the bottom of the original, along with the oval border. While the update isn't groundbreaking enough to knock anything off our best logos list, car logos are among the most well-known in the world – and even the tiniest changes won't go unnoticed by fans.
According to Motor1, Maserati calls the updated design "more modern, balanced and elegant." Indeed, by stripping away decorative features such as the border and lightning bolt, it seems to be joining the trend of simplifying its existing logo – much like Rolls Royce.
Maserati's website says the trident, which has graced all of its racing cars since 1920, is a symbol of "courage and strength". It is based on Neptune’s statue in Piazza Maggiore, Bologna, where the company was based at the time.
Along with the updated logo, the MC20 features a new version of Maserati's wordmark (below). Again, the changes are subtle – the text has been slightly sharpened with decorative flourishes pared back, reducing the original's 'handwritten' effect and creating a more streamlined, contemporary look.
Unlike BMW, which recently unveiled its biggest logo change in 100 years, Maserati has opted to modernise its look with subtle tweaks. But while it might not make for the most exciting identity refresh we've seen, we can't blame Maserati for playing it safe. As our logo design guide says, it's essential for a design to be instantly recognisable. And not every car brand has that entirely nailed – as these car logos drawn from memory hilariously prove.