Which Automaker Has a Lion for a Logo?

Perhaps you are traveling abroad or watching an international auto race and noticed one automaker with a lion for its logo. You are almost certainly looking at a Peugeot. Peugeot is one of the oldest and largest manufacturers in the auto industry. Peugeot group actually merged with Fiat Chrysler to form Stellantis. Its logo has gone through several major revisions, all of which included its signature lion’s head.

What are the origins of the Peugeot lion?

The Peugeot family hails from eastern France, and it opened a steel foundry there in 1810. Its first product was a saw blade emblazoned with the image of a lion walking on an arrow. The logo was conceived to represent speed, strength, and flexibility–according to Stellantis.

Closeup of a lion car logo set into the small grille of a red car, rain drops visible on its paint.
Peugeot logo | Cezary Kowalski/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

RELATED: The Bugatti So Rare, Jay Leno Can’t Buy One

Peugeot would go on to build a steam-powered tricycle in 1889, then pivot to a petrol-fueled four-wheel car in 1890. The brand has built bicycles, motorcycles, and even kitchen implements. Though it has split into different corporations (sometimes merging again), Peugeot has always been united under the sigil of the lion.

Unlike some automakers, Peugeot has changed up the look of its lion over the years. What started as semi-realistic full-body lion drawing became an art-deco hood ornament bust and, finally, the blocky rearing lion of the 1980s that is most familiar to Peugeot fans.

What automakers besides Peugeot have a lion in their logo?

General Motors’ Holden brand of Australia has a lion rolling a round stone as its logo. Truck companies Büssing, MAN, and Roewe, as well as armored truck company INKAS, also have lions in their logos. Finally, Proton cars has a lion head as its logo.

The Peugeot lion logo is superimposed over the face of a roaring sports fan in this Stellantis advertisement.
Peugeot ad campaign | Stellantis

RELATED: What Brand Truck Does the Russian Military Drive?

Though these automakers all share a lion in their logo, they couldn’t be more different. According to CarLogos.com, MAN is a subsidiary of VW. Roewe, however, is a subsidiary of Chinese SAIC Motor. SAIC claims Roewe is a Chinese pronunciation of Loewe, the German word for lion. But some have pointed out that it started the company immediately after losing the bid to buy Land Rover.

Büssing and MAN were once competitors, but then MAN/VW bought out German-based Büssing. Now Büssing trucks are advertised as MAN-Büssing. But while Büssing incorporated the MAN name, MAN took on the Büssing logo.

INKAS builds armored vehicles as well as safes, aerospace defense, and financial security services. It is based in Canada. The entire company’s logo is a winged lion holding a sword. And of course, this logo is emblazoned on its trucks as well.

So while Peugeot might be the automaker most associated with a lion–and the first to use a lion–it is far from the only automaker with a lion as its logo.

Does Peugeot have a new logo?

After its merger with Stellantis, Peugeot changed up its lion logo again. The latest Peugeot logo is a more realistic image and only depicts the lion’s head.

A twenty-foot-tall lion sculpture still in a workshop with an artist staring up at it.
Peugeot lion statue | Stellantis

RELATED: Ferrari, Lamborghini Seek EU Combustion Ban Exemption, Porsche Fires Back

The Peugeot company has turned its logo change into an event. One tie-in is a massive lion sculpture Stellantis commissioned. Another tie-in is an advertising campaign called “Lions of our time,” showing the new logo super-imposed over the face of various people.

Next, watch the evolution of the Peugeot lion in the video below:

RELATED: Does Dodge Own Ram Trucks?