Read this on F1 Live
Starting on Tuesday, June 17, the first day of Ford Motor Company's second century, Ford will launch the centennial oval as the company's corporate identity.
The Ford oval, the primary symbol representing Ford Motor Company during much of the last 100 years, is being modernized into a centennial version that will be revealed on Ford's World Headquarters building in June for the centennial celebration.
“This action is far more than changing a sign on a building,” said Jan Valentic, vice president, Global Marketing, Ford Motor Company. “The Ford oval is a powerful symbol, recognized the world over as an icon of the company that put the world on wheels. As we head into our next century, we want to make it very clear that it is the same symbol that will lead the industry on three simple tenets: great products, a strong business and a better world.”
The move to the centennial oval is a key component of the company's revitalization strategy. “As our product-led transformation has been gaining strength, we’ve been exclaiming that ‘the blue oval is back – and in a major way.’” Valentic said. “This is just one more way.”
Ford has been American's favorite automotive brand since 1903, based on sales, and continues to rank among consumers as one of America’s 'best brands,' according to syndicated research.
Elements of the centennial oval are apparent through many evolutions of the company’s logo since 1903. In 1909, the style of the word “Ford,” designed by C.H. Wills, an engineer and draftsman who came to Ford shortly after its incorporation, continues as part of today's logo.
With so few 100-year-old companies, connections like these give Ford a special position in the minds and hearts of employees and consumers. “If you talk to any of our many 30- or 40-years-in-service employees, they speak with great emotion about being participants in Ford's 100-year history,” Valentic said.
In 2000, the company’s corporate identity evolved from the Ford oval to “Ford Motor Company” written out in script on printed documents, business cards and on some buildings, including the company's World Headquarters. However, the Ford brand's vehicle badges were not affected. Ford-branded cars and trucks continued to use the Ford oval, and the company’s other brands – Lincoln, Mercury, Mazda, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo – continued to use their own unique marques on their respective vehicles.
Going forward, the Ford oval will be the symbol for both the corporation and for Ford-branded cars and trucks. Logos on the company’s other brands and products will not change, underlining the strength of these individual brands.
“The oval is a memorable visual symbol that conjures up great images of the storied experiences people have had with their Ford vehicles,” said Valentic. “Almost every one around the world has been touched by the oval: owning a great car, riding in a friend's, singing about our great nameplate or seeing Ford vehicles on the silver screen. Ford, the oval, is a thread in the fabric of our culture.”