Opel to Debut New Logo

By: Anthony Fontanelle

General Motors' Opel brand will unveil a new version of its logo when it launches the Insignia upper-medium car later this year, according to Automotive News Europe's John Revill.

The new version of the lightning bolt badge, which has appeared on Opel cars since 1963, will be displayed in July at the London Auto Show.

Earlier this month, GM executives revealed how they wanted to reposition Opel and move the brand upmarket by emphasizing design and engineering superiority based on traditional German manufacturing attributes.

The change is part of boosting the image of the brand, which saw European sales fall by 8.2 percent in the first quarter of the year to 342,991 units, according to JATO Dynamics.

"The Insignia embodies the confident, exciting direction we are taking at Opel," said Alain Visser, GM Europe's chief marketing officer.

"And this direction is immediately clear from the polished, even higher class brand emblem. We will naturally use the new emblem from now on in all future models."

The latest logo integrates the Opel name into a wider border that circles the trademark lightning bolt. It has a more sculpted design with spherical surfaces that give the emblem three-dimensional depth.

"Capturing that combination of beautifully-sculpted shapes together with German precision is very much consistent with the overall design language and philosophy of our vehicles," says Mark Adams, GM Europe's head of design, who led the team that re-designed the logo.

"The Opel Blitz evolved from a zeppelin - a symbol of progress at that time - which had been the radiator emblem of Opel vehicles since the beginning of the 1930s," said Heinz H. Zettl, manager of Opel Heritage & Institutional Communications.

In 1937, a circle was added - a wheel to symbolize mobility.

Zettl said: "This evolution was also influenced by the brand name of Opel's light commercial vehicles, which from 1930 to 1975 bore the name "Blitz" and featured a lightning bolt as a distinctive symbol." The company's sister brand Vauxhall will also display a new version of its Griffin badge at the London show.

The company's sister brand Vauxhall will also display a new version of its Griffin badge at the London show.

While the new badge will keep the tradition Opel look, it is intended to better convey Opel's new focus on design and style of . "Capturing that combination of beautifully-sculpted shapes together with German precision is very much consistent with the overall design language and philosophy of our vehicles," Mark Adams, GM Europe's head of design, told Automotive News.

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