Kia Isn’t the Only Manufacturer That’s Subtly Changing its Logo This Year

We recently heard the news that Kia is changing its name and rebranding the company. But apparently, it’s not just Kia. BMW, General Motors, Volkswagen, Nissan, and FCA (now Stellantis) are all car companies subtly changing their logo as well. In the Chinese Zodiac’s Year of the Ox, we are seeing a lot of subtle logo changes.

The logo on a Kia Sedona for sale at a Kia dealership.
The Kia logo | Scott Olson/Getty Images

What’s in a name? In the auto world, each manufacturer’s name represents boatloads of equity. In fact, some people think it’s a bit risky to change logos and rebrand when things are already working. The other train of thought is that a shift in marketing and ad representation can launch a brand into even more momentum than it’s already experiencing.

Is Kia changing it’s name?

As fellow MotorBiscuit writer Gabrielle DeSantis recently reported, Kia is in fact changing its name. The brand is making some small changes in an effort to rebrand and stay fresh. The changes are minimal, however.

A Kia Telluride on display next to an award
A Kia Telluride on display | Paul Marotta/Getty Images

Kia is changing its nomenclature from Kia Motors to simply “Kia.” It’s not really much of an alteration, seeing as how most people just say “Kia” when they speak of the brand anyway. But what other brands or car companies are changing their name?

Subtle changes and what they signify

When brands subtly change, they do so in an effort to stay in motion along with the dynamic market around them. No market or industry stays the same. Nor should it. Things move at a fast pace and sometimes that requires a bit of change if you want to stay ahead of the game.

2022 VW Golf R
2022 VW Golf R | Volkswagen Group

Subtle changes to logos and names are one way for a brand to define itself and stay fresh. While certain fundamentals are important not to change––good quality, for example––there are other things in the wheelhouse that are waiting to be propelled into the future. Logos are the primary symbol of a brand. So changing a log needs to be carefully planned and thought out.

So what are automakers hoping to achieve by changing the brand logo? With subtle changes like what we see in the upcoming Kia, GM, and BMW logos, for instance, it appears that car companies just want to keep up with feeling new and exciting. Check out the logos below to see how they will be moving in a slightly different direction.

BMW, GM, Kia, VW,
changing auto industry logos |

Some of the changes represent a more welcoming and open feel for the consumer. Others are just more distinctive. The Kia, General Motors, and BMW logos all certainly look different. GM has gone lowercase, BMW has taken things to a simpler plane, and Kia is more angular and “distinctive” (as commented in the article).

What’s your favorite car logo?

There are many to choose from. We have the Mercedes-Benz star, the Blue Oval of Ford, and the all-new lowercase General Motors logo. But what’s your favorite? Personally, I love the Ferrari horse, Subaru’s stars, and the ram of Ram Trucks. But there are so many it’s hard to choose an actual favorite.

The logo of the Munich car manufacturer BMW can be seen on the rims of a car
The BMW logo | Sina Schuldt/picture alliance via Getty Images

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With General Motors, Volkswagen, BMW, Nissan, Kia, and Stellantis all changing their logos, we have to wonder who’s next? Or will other companies lay low and watch to see how it affects these brands before following suit? Only time will tell.