The new logos could hint at future sub-brands.
New trademark filings in Germany and the U.S. hint Audi may revamp its logo in the near future, according to QuattroWorld.com. The filings show two possible logos that revolutionize the company’s iconic four interconnected rings. One resembles an outline of the current logo, consisting of four connected incomplete circles. The other new logo is similar, with two interconnected center circles, as you can see above.
In both filings, the new logos are designated for 'vehicles and their structural parts; radiator grilles,' which is where Audi places its current logo. However, why Audi is changing its logo now, trademarking two distinct designs remains a mystery.
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QuattroWorld.com speculates the new logos may have something to do with the company’s connected car-to-car or electrification efforts, which makes sense. As Audi moves into new technological spaces, such as autonomous vehicles, electrification, and connected cars, a new logo distinguishing its forward-thinking efforts could help the automaker distinguish itself. As of right now, the company hasn’t indicated if it plans to make such changes to its vehicles, but if it’s going to manufacture cars with cutting-edge technologies, a new logo could help market the product to image-conscious customers.
Logos for companies and brands change all the time. Often, the changes are subtle, tweaking a colour or font while maintaining familiarity with the previous design. Cadillac changed its logo a few years ago, tossing the wreath and flattening the overall design. Audi is no different. The company’s iconic four rings as we know them today debuted in 1985, paying homage to the company's interconnected rings introduced in 1932 and solidified in 1949 with Auto Union. Even as recently as 2009 saw Audi modernizing its logo, refining the Audi font while enhancing the look of the four rings.